In November, last year, Mr. Paschal Donohoe, the Minster for Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform delivered the Budget 2019. One key new strategy that was announced during the budget was “Our Public Libraries”. The Irish government is investing heavily into public libraries to encourage and improve learning, and to bring technology in libraries up to date.
We have highlighted some of the key elements of “Our Public Libraries 2022” in our infographic below.
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The Minister for Rural and Community Development, Mr Michael Ring T.D, has revealed what the Irish government will purchase as part of the “Our Public Libraries 2022 – Inspiring, Connecting and Empowering Communities” strategy.
The “Our Public Libraries 2022 – Inspiring, Connecting and Empowering Communities” strategy covers three core functions of the public library service –
- Reading and Literacy
- Information and Learning
- Community and Culture.
The strategy plans to improve access to digital services across Ireland and encourages Irish libraries to work with local partners. In a press release, the Irish Government notes that the initiative hopes to reach:
“disadvantaged, marginalised and new communities, increasing these communities’ awareness of services available and firmly establishing the library as a resource for all.”
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Upgrading technologies and facilities
A number of IT tenders will come from the new strategy. Minister for Rural and Community Development Michael Ring announced in July that a €7.8 million will be made which will enable the purchase of new technologies and IT upgrades for up to 300 libraries.
The Irish government will be looking for suppliers to provide the following products and services:
- iPads/tablets/smart devices for users and for staff to assist users
- Computers and workstations including image deployment technology
- Software to support design, gaming, and coding
- Meeting space technology
- Podcasting equipment and workstations
- Mobile LCD screens with audio
- Interactive whiteboards
- Digital training suites
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