Four reasons why the National Library of Australia is so valuable to Australia and Australians

The first three entries below are cut-and-pasted (with permission) from the Petherick Reading Room newsletter put out by the Library to Petherick readers. The fourth entry introduces to Trove those who do not know of it – or reminds those who do – which has recently been upgraded but whose future is threatened by funding cuts.

A perceptive piece from Overland by librarian Hugh Rundle comparing the resourcing of the National Library and of ASIO. A secure world without intellectual stimulation. ‘The National Library’s great sin’, says Rundle, ‘was to create a service built on the “moral choice” of radical openness’.

Australian Data Archive (or here)

The Australian Data Archive (ADA) provides a national service for the collection and preservation of digital research data and makes these data available for secondary analysis by academic researchers and other users. It contains seven sub archives: Social Science, Historical (including Australian census data), Indigenous, Longitudinal, Qualitative, Crime & Justice and International.

All visitors can browse and search the catalogue, view study and variable documentation (including frequencies) and download related material (questionnaires, codebooks, etc). Registered users can also analyse and visualise most data online and users who have completed the relevant undertaking form(s) can download entire studies or subsets of variables in a range of formats.

Federation Research Guide (or here)

A guide to the collections of Federation-related material held by the National Library of Australia and elsewhere. Note: all National Library Research Guides are available via the link to Research Guides on the NLA home page.

The Prosecution Project (or here)

An investigation into the history of criminal trials in Australia. Includes digitised registers of Supreme Court cases that are available in most Australian jurisdictions, recording the names of accused as well as their offences and the outcomes of the trials. Includes links to Trove digitised newspapers.


The blurb says, ‘Find and get over 472,691,000 Australian and online resources: books, images, historic newspapers, maps, music, archives and more’. ‘Nuff said.

Late Night Live weighs in to support Trove. More on Fairfax. Also a blog. HH’s Peter Stanley.

8 March 2016 updated

7218648-3x2-340x227(ABC/Getty Images/Simon McGill)

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