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Digital Scotland, the relevance of library research and the Glasgow Digital Library Project

Law, D. and Nicholson, D. (2001) Digital Scotland, the relevance of library research and the Glasgow Digital Library Project. Program, 35 (1). pp. 1-14. ISSN 0033-0337

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The Glasgow Digital Library (GDL) Project has a significance over and above its primary aim of creating a joint digital library for the citizens of Glasgow. It is also both an important building block in the development of a planned and co-ordinated 'virtual Scotland' and a rich environment for research into issues relevant to that enterprise. Its creation comes at a time of political, social, economic and cultural change in Scotland, and may be seen, at least in part, as a response to a developing Scottish focus in these areas, a key element of which is a new socially inclusive and digitally driven educational vision and strategy based on the Scottish traditions of meritocratic education, sharing and common enterprise, and a fiercely independent approach. The initiative is based at the Centre for Digital Library Research at Strathclyde University alongside a range of other projects of relevance both to the development of a coherent virtual landscape in Scotland and to the GDL itself, a supportive environment which allows it to draw upon the research results and staff expertise of other relevant projects for use in its own development and enables its relationship to virtual Scotland to be both explored and developed more readily. Although its primary aim is the creation of content (based initially on electronic resources created by the institutions, on public domain information, and on joint purchases and digitisation initiatives) the project will also investigate relationships between regional and national collaborative collection management programmes with SCONE (Scottish Collections Network Extension project) and relationships between regional and national distributed union catalogues with CAIRNS (Co-operative Academic Information Retrieval Network for Scotland) and COSMIC (Confederation of Scottish Mini-Clumps). It will also have to tackle issues associated with the management of co-operation.