The Advisory Group

The National Strategy for Public Libraries Advisory Group was formed soon after the introdution of Ambition & Opportunity. It consists of a combination of Strategic Leads and key stakeholders who meet to discuss the continuing progress of the public library strategy and plan for the future.


The current Strategic Leads for each Aim are:
Strategic Aim Strategic Lead
1: Reading, Literacy & Learning Judy Dobbie, Head of Library and Information Services, Dundee Leisure & Culture
2: Digital Inclusion Russell Brown, Digital and Support Services Manager, Culture NL
3: Economic Wellbeing Andrew Olney, Head of Communities & Libraries, Glasgow Life
4: Social Wellbeing Jane Milne, Customer Services Manager, Midlothian Council
5: Culture & Creativity Alana Ward, Libraries Museum & Archives Manager, Inverclyde Council
6: Excellent Public Services Rhona Arthur, Senior Manager (information & Culture), North Ayrshire Council
Key Stakeholders
The key stakeholders who attend Advisory Group meetings are:


The Group also has two official observers. These are:


The Advisory Group: Background

In 2014 a Working Group was formed to develop Scotland’s first national strategy for public libraries. The group was comprised of experts from within the library profession as well as those from the third sector and industry. Martyn Evans, Chief Executive of the Carnegie UK Trust, chaired the group while the Scottish Government and COSLA acted as observers.


The Working Group had formal relationships with two other groups, namely:
  • A group made up of councilors from the COSLA Sports, Arts and Culture Working Group.
  • An advisory group made up of the Heads of Public Library Services (now the Association of Public Libraries in Scotland).
Why the Working Group was Formed

In 2012 the Carnegie UK Trust published A New Chapter – a discussion paper which set out the main issues facing the public library sector. The research revealed people still loved their libraries but that public libraries can’t stand still in a changing world. A move towards a public library service fit for the 21st century was needed.   

Then in 2014, the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) developed a paper entitled The Case for a National Strategy for Public Libraries. Both these documents highlighted the benefits of national policy and strategic leadership in creating a unified vision and service delivery plan.