Posted on March 12th, 2014 by admin in Collections, Library Services, Strategic Plan, Technology
Tags: Access and Innovation, Center of Knowledge, commonwealth, digital, digitization, DPLA, massachusetts
by Tom Blake
With millions upon millions of items to potentially digitize at the BPL, you would think we would have enough on our plates. But, in our role as a Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) Service Hub, we have taken on the digitization of collections across the entire Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Any library, archives, museum, historical society, or other cultural heritage institution in the state is eligible for this service. We have already been engaged by over 150 different institutions seeking our help get their collections digitized and made available online.
Although it might seem strange or even imprudent to take on such a task in a day when resources can be stretched thin, we believe that extending our state-of-the-art digitization services beyond our walls significantly increases the value of our own collections.
The works of Lowell Mason are a perfect example. Boston Public Library’s music department holds significant materials by this turn of the century composer and teacher, and these materials are critical in understanding the history of public music education. The Lowell Mason Foundation, a small nonprofit organization based in Medfield, requested our services to have complementary items digitized. Once digitization is complete, these items will become unified, virtually, with the holdings of the BPL via Digital Commonwealth and the DPLA. As our materials are connected to these other resources, we will have created a more comprehensive online resource for researchers who otherwise would have had to travel to multiple locations. This ability to enable a high level of discoverability for small, local collections bolsters our position as a leader and an innovator for library services. This has been our reputation since our founding and a source of pride for Boston ever since.
Posted on July 19th, 2013 by Christine Schonhart in Library Services, Major Projects, Strategic Plan
Tags: branch libraries
From December 2012 through February 2013, a review of all Boston Public Library branch locations was conducted. The goal of the review was to evaluate how successfully the branches meet the Principles for Excellence established by the Compass: Strategic Plan approved by the library’s Board of Trustees on November 15, 2011.
You can find the full text of the review here, and then click the image of the map.
Posted on March 7th, 2013 by Gina Perille in Strategic Plan
Tags: Dudley, Roxbury, User-Centered Institution
The next Compass Roundtable will take place on Thursday, March 28, 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. in the Dudley Literacy Center of the Boston Public Library, located at 65 Warren Street in Roxbury. The focus will be on the User-centered Institution principle and will include information on youth outreach, the Dudley Fellowes Program, and the Xenos online language learning game. The leaders of the roundtable are JoAnn E. Butler, Coordinator of Literacy Services; Christine Schonhart, Director of Library Services, Branches; and Jessi Snow, Youth Services Coordinator.
Download and share the March Compass Roundtable flyer (PDF).
“Compass” is the name of the Boston Public Library’s strategic plan. The User-centered principle in the Compass states: The BPL is a user-centered institution with services that anticipate and respond to neighborhood interests and the changing demographics of the City and Commonwealth.
User-centered Institution is the eighth of eight principles that staff from the BPL have discussed with the public following the unanimous approval of the strategic plan by the BPL Board of Trustees in November 2011. Boston Public Library engaged its stakeholders in a two-year, three-phase planning process prior to that Board approval.
If you are not able to join the User-centered Institution roundtable, you are welcome to leave a comment on this blog or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your ideas.
Posted on January 22nd, 2013 by Gina Perille in Strategic Plan
Tags: Back Bay, Community Gathering, Copley Square, Roundtable
The next Compass Roundtable will take place on Wednesday, January 30, at 6 p.m. in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street. Join a conversation about the Community Gathering principle with David Leonard, Boston Public Library’s Director of Administration & Technology, and Mary Frances O’Brien, the BPL’s Chief of Public Services .
“Compass” is the name of the Boston Public Library’s strategic plan. Community Gathering is the seventh of eight principles that staff from the BPL have discussed with the public following the unanimous approval of the strategic plan by the BPL Board of Trustees in November 2011. The Boston Public Library engaged its stakeholders in a two-year, three-phase planning process prior to that Board approval. The final Compass principle to be discussed is the User-Centered Institution principle, which will be covered in March 2013.
Download and share the January 30 Roundtable flyer (PDF).
If you are not able to join the January roundtable, you are always welcome to leave a comment on this blog or send an email to email@example.com with your ideas.
Posted on January 10th, 2013 by Mary Frances O'Brien in Library Services, Major Projects, Strategic Plan
Tags: Center of Knowledge, Special Collections
A key to meeting the library’s Compass principles that focus on Special Collections and the BPL as a Center of Knowledge is ensuring that the library’s unique and valuable collections are safe and accessible. Although space in Central Library totals almost a million square feet, it is still not large enough to hold the extensive collections that the library has gathered through its history.
Since the 1940s, the library has used a number of buildings to serve as storage facilities, but now we are entering the final phase of a long term project to consolidate our offsite storage space in the City of Boston Archival Center, located at 201 Rivermoor Street in West Roxbury. When completed, much of the library’s special research collection will be stored in a secure climate controlled state-of-the-art facility that will enhance the efficient storage and retrieval of books, journals, newspapers, maps, films, and archival materials. The facility is based on a high-density shelving plan and is designed around the “Harvard model” in which materials are shelved according to size. Barcodes are assigned to match each item with a specific location on a shelf. Requested materials will be retrieved by staff and delivered to the Central Library or, for some titles, to a branch location. Occasionally, if a large collection is requested, users will be welcomed to the spacious reading room which is shared with the City of Boston Archives.
For those interested in local history, the facility will be most convenient as they pursue their research into the history and culture of Boston.