UKZN Team Gleans Valuable Information at the British Library
UKZN staff members recently attended a five-day International Leaders’ Programme at the British Library in the United Kingdom.
Mr Nazim Gani, Alan Paton Centre and Struggle Archives; IT Consultant, Mr Bongani Jwara; Mr Senzo Mkhize from the Campbell Collections; and the Gandhi-Luthuli Documentation Centre’s Mr Thiru Munsamy attended the intensive development programme.
Over the course of a week, the UKZN delegates met peers from around the world and discussed key issues in contemporary collection management through a series of workshops, case study reviews and focus groups, gaining knowledge and insights in the following:
• Discovering how the British Library’s expert curators use library collections to engage with researchers and broader audiences;
• Learning how the British Library designs and manages digitisation projects;
• Caring for physical collections – preservation and conservation;
• Caring for digital collections – digital preservation, metadata and cataloguing;
• Using new tools and services to engage researchers;
• Using collections in learning programmes and exhibitions to engage a wide range of audiences.
The team thanked UKZN’sLibrary management for the invaluable and enriching experience.
*About the British Library:
The British Library holds one of the largest collections of physical items in the world, numbering around 160 million items. Whilst the majority of the collection is book and paper based, the collection also comprises almost every material and format type, sometimes in substantial quantities. To name but a few, it includes leather, parchment, textiles, paintings, ceramic, metals, gem stones, wood furniture, sculpture, plastics, ivory, bone and photographs. The library has the dual objectives of preserving the collection and enabling access to users. The conservation team, numbering around 55 specialists, sets policy, monitors the conditions for the collection and undertakes remedial action to stabilise the condition of items for a range of uses.