Profile of the organisation
Libraries Development, Local Government Management Agency was established in 2012 to continue the functions of An Chomhairle Leabharlanna The Library Council.The functions of Libraries Development include the following:
- the provision of advice, assistance and services to library authorities in relation to the public library service.
- the making of such recommendations to and the provision of such services for the Minister in relation to the public library service.
- action to promote and facilitate library co-operation within Ireland and internationally.
Libraries Development manages the national policy for the digitisation of public library holdings and the national digitisation research and initiatives arising. Activities to date include the national digitisation programme for public libraries, the national online resource for local studies material, digitisation of the archive of the national paper of record and online access provision to the most important Irish genealogical records for the nineteenth century. Libraries Development works with national education bodies to develop content to support the education curriculum in schools, with libraries to develop literacy and numeracy supports and liaises with teacher training colleges to tailor content and content applications to the requirements of the teacher. The organisation has participated in a number of EU projects including Activate, Cultivate, MINERVA, MinervaPlus, MinervaEC, EuropeanaLocal and is currently the national participant in the PERFORMA, EliNet, and ENUMERATE projects.
Role in the project
Libraries Development will operate as a content provider and pilot test partner. Libraries Development, LGMA is a national aggregator for cultural content. Based on the local studies collections of public libraries, the digital content covers a wide variety of cultural and heritage subjects with over 25 separate topics. Datasets in specific areas such as the environment, literature, genealogy, history and geography (local and national) are included and Libraries Development, LGMA works with the education sector and schools utilising these resources. Digital objects available for use in the project will number in the hundreds and will include images, documents and maps.
Annette Kelly is the Head of Libraries Development. She is the library advisor to the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government and is responsible for the development of library strategy at national level. Annette manages the Changing Libraries Programme for the provision of electronic services in public libraries in Ireland. Annette is one of two Irish representatives on the Member States Experts Group on Digitisation and Digital Preservation. She is also a member of the policy steering group on public libraries, the Euro Focus on the Cultural Heritage Committee in Ireland and is the Chair of the public libraries’ Cultural Heritage Panel for the digitisation of public library material.
Joan Ward has co-ordinated the national digitisation programme for public libraries in Ireland and co-ordinates the national online resource for digitised local studies material and the Changing Libraries Programme for the provision of electronic services in public libraries in Ireland. She is currently liaising with education bodies to deliver a teacher education programme on cultural heritage content. Joan is currently managing the creation of an historic digital book collection online and is co-ordinating the Irish input into the Linked Heritage project. Joan has managed the Irish input to a number of EU projects including Activate, MINERVA, MinervaPlus, MinervaEC, EuropeanaLocal and Linked Heritage.
Ruth Montague is a co-ordinator on the digitisation programme in Libraries Development with experience in web development, editing and graphic design. She is a researcher in a number of different areas, particularly in history, the environment and creative media. Ruth is also a co-ordinator of the Europe Direct Information Centre initiative in Irish public libraries.