ANNUAL REPORT 2012
BRITISH LIBRARY FOR DEVELOPMENT STUDIES TEAM ACHIEVEMENTS
The British Library for Development Studies (BLDS) has continued to work over the last year on opening up access to development research globally and in supporting IDS teaching and research.
We have received extensive positive feedback on improvements to our local services for students and researchers at IDS. On our global work, we have expanded our digitisation programme and are helping institutions in the South build their capacity for repository development.
BLDS's cutting-edge work on information literacy in Southern countries is building the training and facilitation skills of those who work with policymakers, and is enabling partners to better monitor and evaluate information literacy interventions.
The BLDS collection of economic and social development material is the largest in Europe. Our collection is unique among Northern libraries in that over half of our material originates from the South.
Training students on effective information-seeking
Being fit for purpose
Over the last year, BLDS has delivered a range of interventions to help students conduct more effective information searches, tailoring these to the needs of particular groups of students, and providing them with vital professional skills. In autumn 2011, we surveyed students who attended the training sessions, and found that all respondents found the training useful and that 94 per cent indicated that they have changed their information-seeking behaviour as a direct result of the training.
Information literacy brings research to policy
Building new relationships
In July 2011, BLDS partnered with INASP to work with institutions involved in influencing how policymakers use information, including academic libraries, civil society organisations and policymaking institutions themselves. Along with INASP, we developed and delivered an intensive five-day workshop that helped information literacy trainers be more effective in building the skills of policymakers in sub-Saharan Africa. The project improved trainers' teaching skills and helped them tailor their work to the needs of policymakers. Workshop participants were enthused by our participatory, learner-centred approach, and follow-up surveys revealed that they were successfully applying these methods to their own training. Ultimately, this work helps increase the use of evidence and research in the policy process.
John Stephen Agbenyo, Executive Director, Savana Signatures, Ghana
Since attending the BLDS pedagogy training workshop, we have collaborated on producing video resources to help make information literacy trainers more effective through better teaching approaches. As a result, we have acquired new and useful skills and approaches that we are now passing on others through our information literacy work. We use the video resources and training methods we've developed with IDS to generate local content for our community-based work, and in turn to contribute to global content and help inform the tools and methods of information literacy trainers more widely.
BRITISH LIBRARY FOR DEVELOPMENT STUDIES >The British Library for Development Studies (BLDS) holds Europe's largest collection on economic and social research. These unique holdings, built up over 40 years, consist of approximately one million items held in over four miles of shelving space.
The BLDS collection of economic and social development material is the largest in Europe.