Australia: Inside the New South Wales State Library’s $72 Million Digitisation Program
Note: $72 million Australian dollars currently converts to approximately $51 million in U.S. dollars.
The 188-year-old State Library of NSW is grappling with how to preserve and access content through its 10-year centre of digital excellence digitisation program.
The program launched in mid-2012 and has been pledged $72 million over 10 years by the NSW state government.
The first stage of the program, which is nearing completion, was a $10.2 million refresh of the library’s infrastructure and systems.
It includes the implementation of the Ex Libris Rosetta digital preservation system, which when finished will provide an integrated platform for library and archive management, digital preservation, and for customer search and access.
According to [NSW chief executive and state librarian Alex] Byrne, the biggest challenge has been finding vendors that could meet the library’s quality requirements.
“It’s managed through an internal team, but a large proportion of the work – 80 percent roughly in dollar terms – is external,” he said.
“Many companies do mass copying or scanning, but it’s for legal or government, where volume is more important than quality, so it’s a challenge for some of our business partners.
About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.