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Performance at a glance

Libraries Board of South Australia

There were 11 Libraries Board meetings held throughout the 2021-22 financial year, and members attended:

Libraries Board Member

Meetings Attended

Bruce Linn AM – Chair


Professor Amanda Nettelbeck


Janet Finlay


Bronwyn Lewis


Scott Hicks


Megan Berghuis


Professor Joanne Cys


Jillian Whittaker


State Library access statistics

Physical Access (Onsite)


Onsite visitation (total number of people attending to access services, exhibitions, programs, events)


Exhibition visitation (total number of people that viewed an onsite exhibition)


Engagement programs (total number of scheduled sessions for adults and children including presentations, tours, talks, workshops, demonstrations, and events)


Program attendance (total number of people attending scheduled sessions)


Service enquiries (total number of enquires at all service points)


Physical collection use – uses that generate a statistic, a use can be a single book or several boxes of archival material.


Research enquiries (total number of specialist research enquiries answered through Ask Us service)


Physical collection use (total number of recorded uses of open access and stored collection material – a use can relate to a single item or multiple boxes of material)


Document Delivery (total number of items requested or supplied to libraries and customers)


English Language classes (total number of attendees)


Digital Access (Online)


Digital collections (quantity in Terabytes)


Digital collection use (total number of instances digital content was accessed)


SA newspapers availability (total number of pages accessible via TROVE)


Library guides (total number of instances a specialist research guide is viewed)


Digital resources (total number of views and downloads via websites and YouTube)


Digital programs (total number of participants attending digital sessions for primary, secondary, and tertiary students)


Social engagement (total number of interactions through websites and social media channels - Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, Flickr, LinkedIn, Trip Advisor, Google my Business and Red Bubble)


Public Library Services statistics









eBook and Audiobook loans


eMagazines and eNewspaper loans








English Language Test training


Online Learning hours


Public Libraries App


Libraries SA app downloads


Libraries SA app launches (use)


Libraries SA app new devices


Technology Services and Internet


Helpdesk calls


Internet volume per day (Terabytes)


Programs and Communications


Social Media – Facebook Audience


Agency response to COVID-19

During the first half of the year many of the State Library’s regular customers continued to be unable to attend the North Terrace site due to capacity limits and vulnerability. As restrictions eased the Library returned to a ‘business as usual’ model and this is reflected in higher onsite visitor numbers during the second half of the year.

From January 2022 the State Library implemented a tiered approach to service delivery, to adjust rosters and services to accommodate the unplanned absence of staff due to illness, caring responsibilities, and isolation requirements. This tiered approach included staffing service points on demand and changes to service delivery levels to minimise the impact on customers.

Other initiatives for service delivery included implementation of plastic face shields for service point staff members as an additional layer of protection, a script to staff members to interact with mask-exempt patrons, extra cleaning of high-touch points (kiosks and MFDs) and room capacity signage.

Public Library Services staff demonstrated a high degree of agility in responding to the COVID-19 Pandemic that included supporting different models of service delivery and increasing online services. The Library Applications team were involved in extensive OneCard library management system reconfigurations on multiple occasions and helped equip public libraries with their chosen method of customer service.  Staff worked alongside the LGA and State Government staff to balance community safety with the community’s continued need to access technology, trusted information, and collections through Click and Collect (provides community access to collections without the need to enter a library building); Library to You (home delivery of library materials to customers who were isolated); and early literacy, employment support, wellbeing and recreational programs pivoted to online service delivery.

Agency specific objectives and performance







Key Acquisitions and Donations - Published Collections

South Australian Collection

  • 2022 state and federal election material and websites
  • 12 early novels by J. M. Coetzee – published in South Africa prior to his move to South Australia
  • 13 19th century South Australian scenes painted on silk coasters 
  • 58 maps from the Country Fire Service (CFS)
  • To Mount Browne and Back by J. C. F. Johnson 
  • Electronic deposit of the Advertiser and Sunday Mail 

General Reference Collection

  • Blue – an Australian bi-monthly gay men's magazine

Special Collections

Rare books

  • Gul-e-curfew by Moonis Ahmad

Children’s Literature Research Collection (CLRC)

  • 1940s dolls house
  • Jenny lives with Eric and Martin (1987) (one of the world’s first children’s books presenting same sex parents)
  • 1886 Telegraph Messenger Boy game
  • 1950s Kubasta Father Christmas pop-up book

Paul McGuire Maritime Library

  • Two 1858 Port River maps

July 2021 – June 2022

Key Acquisitions and Donations - Archival Collections


53 linear metres of material was recorded (increase of 60%) and 68.5 linear metres of physical collection material (increase of 213%) and 125 GB of digital content was processed (increase of 40.5%).

Key acquisitions and donations for the year include:

  • Joyce Batty papers - Batty was a journalist and photojournalist in outback SA and central Australia during the 1960s-1990s. She published a Biography of Albert Namatjira – Wanderer Between Two Worlds and exhibited drawings created by the Aboriginal children of Hermannsburg Mission.
  • D Darian Smith photographic archive – a well-known Adelaide photographer, this collection comprises over 100,000 predominantly large format high resolution negatives and offers value to a wide range of researchers, from family history to social historians, researchers of Adelaide businesses and industries from Holden’s car manufacturers to wineries. Aerial photographs will appeal to those interested in changes to the landscape and city over the course of 60 years.
  • Edward Charles Stirling books, some archival records, objects, and material. EC Stirling was a surgeon, scientist and politician, and Director of the South Australian Museum from 1884-1912.
  • Uncle Lewis O’Brien oral history [film] - capturing stories and reflections on film of this Kaurna elder.
  • A collection of over 50 glass plate negatives was purchased as part of the Captain White Collection offering by Scammells auctioneers. The collection depicts Farina and surrounds in the early 20th Century, including images of Aboriginal people.
  • John Kauffmann – the Library purchased three photographic works and related items of the art photographer John Kauffmann who was born at Truro, South Australia in 1864, and went on to become the so-called father of the ‘Pictorialism’ style of photography in Australia. The three photographs document the South Australian town of his birth, rural life and a coastal landscape. The acquisition includes medals from photographic competitions and are evidence of the life and work of a South Australian artist and the awards he garnered in his field.  Also included in the purchase is an original pencil sketch on paper of John Kauffmann by his friend Harold Septimus Power.

July 2021 – June 2022

Indigenous Collections Cultural Competency

The State Library participated in the National and State Libraries Australasia (NSLA) Indigenous Cultural Competency Audit, led by the library’s newly appointed Indigenous Collections Coordinator. 

This annual benchmarking exercise identifies gaps in cultural competencies and provides a plan for improvements directly related to how we work with Indigenous collections.

August 2021

Indigenous Collections Description and Cataloguing


Traditionally libraries have been insensitive in their treatment of Aboriginal content, taking a colonial and scientific perspective. The Library has adopted a series of agreed protocols developed by the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies to ensure that material is described and accessed in a culturally appropriate manner. This is an ongoing retrospective conversion project and to date 1,500 Australian First Nations books have been reclassified and updated in the catalogue. In addition, correction of First Nations material of other countries is also undertaken within the available funding.

August – December 2021

Indigenous Collections - Indigenous Workforce

The Library’s strategic plan includes an action to employ Indigenous staff to manage collections. In 2021 the Library engaged two Aboriginal men on short term contracts. In October 2021, the Indigenous Collections and Repatriation Officer role was made ongoing to be co-funded with the SA Museum for three years. The recruitment of the two roles provides a foundation for delivery of the Library’s Indigenous workforce objectives.

October 2021

National eDeposit (NED)

The Library continued to expand the use of the National eDeposit service (NED) to reduce the cost of complying with legal deposit legislation to South Australian publishers. During the year, 36 South Australian newspaper titles were deposited to NED and 118 South Australian publishers deposited for the first time.

The Library’s Published Collections team was awarded a DPC Employee Recognition ‘High Achievement accolade in the ‘easy to do business with’ category for their work on transitioning publishers to electronic deposit (National eDeposit) processes.

July 2021 – June 2022

Archival Management System

A migration pilot and related consulting services concluded in August with delivery of a metadata crosswalk and draft functional requirements. This provides critical groundwork for the next stage of procuring an Archival Management System for the Library, to improve workflows, enhance collection description and increased online accessibility.

August 2021

Historic Maps

2,000 historic maps, the first series of South Australia Hundreds maps were digitised and made accessible online.

July 2021 – June 2022

Collection Storage Plan


The Library constantly reassesses the value of its non-South Australian reference collections and selected low use or redundant material is repatriated, offered at public sales or destroyed. This ensures that the library can continue to accommodate its ever-growing heritage collections of South Australian publications and private archives.

A major disposal activity was undertaken in which 954 shelf metres (75 cubic metres) of interstate and overseas government publications and Australian Patents were consigned to Signal Waste for recycling.

Prior to the government publications authorisation for disposal, it was determined that public demand had diminished to one request a year for the combined sequences since 2007 and all Australian Patents are available online via a Commonwealth government website that renders the print versions redundant for research purposes.

The storage space gained is now used for reference works removed from open access as part of the Modern Research Library project.

Six collection sequences (87,386 titles) were audited during the year, a process that checks sequence lists generated from the Library Management System Sierra against items on the shelves and involves correcting problems and enhancing collection controls, such as adding barcoding.

July 2021- June 2022

Cold Store

A new cold store (funded by the Libraries Board and the Department of the Premier and Cabinet) is now operational housing the Library’s motion picture film collection at a temperature of 6-degrees, with a transitional anteroom maintained at 16-degrees. This is the first purpose-built cold store constructed for a South Australian cultural institution. Its planning, construction and use is informing the design phase of the government-funded Cultural Institutions Collection Storage Facility that will replace existing sub-standard storage in 2025.

The new cold store also means that the Library is buying time for acetate film while preservation activity focusses on magnetic media for Deadline 2025 which cool or cold storage cannot forestall.

July 2021 – June 2022


The News


The News newspaper was published in South Australia from 1923 to 1992, at which time it was the last metropolitan afternoon newspaper in Australia. The years 1923-1964 had previously been captured on microfilm. A project commenced in August to digitise 1965-1992.

117,242 pages have been scanned to 30 June 2022, over 20% of the estimated total, completing the years 1965-1973. As each year is completed word-searchable access files are being made available to researchers on the State Library premises.

July 2021 – June 2022


Stanislaw Ostoja-Kotkowski collection

2022 is the centenary of the birth of world-renowned artist Joseph Stanislaus (Stan) Ostoja-Kotkowski. The Library holds a rich and varied collection of material relating to his work. During 2021-2022 over 10,000 more items were digitised, including slide transparencies, photographs, sketches, and artworks. Many are already available online through the Library’s catalogue and Collections Viewer.

July 2021 – June 2022

Digital Preservation System

The second year of implementing the Preservica digital preservation system for long term management of digital assets has seen the ingest of the oral history collection completed (15,281 files; 9.7 TB) and continued testing and production of ingest of the published South Australian video collection (80 videos to date,1 TB).

July 2021 – June 2022

Digital Preservation International Benchmark of Maturity

The Library uses the international benchmark maturity model to measure its progress in digital preservation.  The Digital Preservation Coalition Rapid Assessment Model (DPC RAM) has been used by the Library in 2020 and again this year.

Between 2020 and 2022 the Library implemented the Libraries Board-funded Preservica Digital Preservation System. Implementing this system has seen the Library’s “score” in the DPC RAM increase in four of the eleven capability measures and identified substantial progress in all other measures.  The State Library is seen nationally as a place of significance and expertise regarding digital preservation, and this new system will further enhance the Library’s capability.

April 2022

iPres 2021 – 17th International Conference of Digital Preservation


iPres is the renowned international conference about preserving digitised and born digital resources for generations to come. Pre-Covid it required attendance in person. Consequently, Library staff have only attended twice. Both conferences were critical to the development of the State Library’s digital preservation capability and informed the business case for the Library’s purchase of the Preservica digital preservation system in 2020.

Thanks to the rise of ‘hybrid’ conference programming, eight Library staff were able to attend iPres 2021 remotely, from 19-22 October. The conference was convened in Beijing and attended, primarily online, by hundreds of digital preservation specialists. iPres 2021 was a timely opportunity both to benchmark our progress in establishing this significant new business function and to learn about new developments in the international digital preservation community.

October 2021

Preserving CD-ROMs and DVDs


The State Library holds over 5,000 CD-ROM and DVD disks published in South Australia or by South Australians since the 1980s. A project has been completed to determine best practice to migrate the contents of these carriers with the original works’ functionality intact, resulting in recommended workflows. The project will see the content captured and migrated into the Library’s Preservica digital preservation system.

July 2021 – June 2022

Collection Analysis


Data analysis methods were applied to 130,788 titles comprising three open access general reference book sequences. Data was obtained from the Library Management System Sierra and the National Library of Australia’s Trove Collaborative Services. The latter enables benchmarking and comparing the Library’s holdings with national, state and university libraries across Australia. The process revealed 2,773 titles that no other Australian library holds. These will be reviewed for transfer to the Special Collection. 

July 2021 – June 2022

Children’s Literature Research Collection Cataloguing

With support from the Libraries Board, a three-year program to catalogue and describe material in the Children’s Literature Research Collection commenced in August. This will enable greater community discovery and access to the Library’s extensive material on children’s literature.

August 2021

Savill index of the Advertiser Funeral Notices

Savill Index of The Advertiser Funeral Notices is a heavily used online resource that has been redeveloped and relaunched to provide a modern interface and improved searching for researcher’s and Library customers.

February 2022

Scott Hicks Collection Processing

PRG 1726 - Scott Hicks Collection is undergoing processing, preservation and cataloguing and will be embargoed until July 2022 to members of the public, after which they will be able to view collection material.

As well as feature films and casting tapes, the collection comprises many behind the scenes details about the film industry in Australia and Hollywood that include scripts, storyboards, production photographs and correspondence that details the many complexities of film production.

July 2021 – June 2022




State Library Vision Statement

The State Library released a new vision statement, Future Directions – Towards 2030which revitalises our services and how we interact with our customers and the community. The vision identifies the library’s priorities to:

  • develop contemporary and diverse collections that meet legislative requirements and capture South Australian stories
  • care for and preserve collections to make sure that they are available for current and future generations
  • connect with communities to provide opportunities for discovery and use of the stories and information revealed through our collections and services
  • collaborate with partners to increase opportunities for the community to explore our collections through exhibitions, public programs, and events, and through the activation of our unique buildings and spaces
  • improve organisational capacity and empower our people to deliver high-quality services and experiences to the community by embracing innovation, systems improvement, and staff development.

November 2021

Brand Strategy

The Library has been working with Adelaide creative agency Nation Creative to develop a new brand and logo. The new logo is a contemporary interpretation of the monogram developed for the original (1860) South Australian Institute, which is still found in the Library’s Mortlock Wing.

Roll out of the new State Library brand and logo commenced in July as well as finalising and distribution of Brand Guidelines. The roll out included large-scale external signage in prominent positions around the State Library buildings and carries the key branding tagline the stories that make us.

July 2021

Visitor Experience

A visitor activation strategy will deliver an exciting and vibrant future for the State Library site on North Terrace. Having developed a long-term vision for the site, the Library is now focussed on implementing a series of strategic projects that will change the use of its three buildings, including the historically important Mortlock and Institute Buildings.

The activation strategy includes developing partnerships with key cultural and economic bodies to ensure that the Library is aligned with and contributes to the outcomes sought by the State Government and Adelaide City Council. The project aims to:

  • Leverage the North Terrace location and multiple entrances to drive greater visitation
  • Ensure the State Library’s iconic buildings deliver community value
  • Revitalise heritage spaces
  • Provide opportunities to introduce new technologies
  • Enable commercialisation (where appropriate) without detracting from library service delivery
  • Create clearly delineated spaces that meet diverse visitor, customer and researcher needs

September 2021 – March 2022

Modern Research Library

The Library is working to update and refurbish the research library located on Level 2 of the Spence Wing. Stage one will deliver a new workroom for customer service staff and co-located heritage reading room on Level 2 of the Spence Wing.

The Library is working to update and refurbish the research library on Level 2 of the Spence Wing to deliver contemporary research and information services to the community.

Stage One of the project will provide a new workroom for customer service staff that is adjacent to service points, enabling a more flexible and agile approach to service delivery. This stage will also expand the supervised reading room to provide additional spaces for customers using the Library’s heritage materials.

Preparation for building works has progressed with concept drawings for the new spaces approved. Walls have been removed to enable future shelving of open access material and over 5 km of general reference collections have been relocated to create the required space. The open access general reference collection has been consolidated which sets the model for ongoing maintenance: selection and deselection and onsite storage and access arrangements.

The Department for Infrastructure and Transport (DIT) has been engaged to project manage building works.

July 2021 – June 2022

Stories Website

The Library launched ‘Stories’ – a new section on the website designed to support its longstanding role to tell the stories of South Australia:

This webpage will

  • unearth stories from the State Library’s collections and showcase them in digitally engaging ways.
  • explore the ‘behind the scenes’ of the State Library.
  • provide digital resources and materials to extend access and experience of the Library’s collections, also accessible to those who can’t attend the Library onsite.
  • provide digital versions of physical exhibitions for those unable to attend onsite, and
  • explore the work of researchers and customers who have used the Library’s collections or services to create new content and creations.

August 2021

Adnyamathanha Elders visit to State Library

A group of elders from Nepabunna, came to the Library on a two-day visit coordinated by Indigenous Collections staff member Jeremy Sibbald with researchers from the University of New England working on the mapping of Songlines of Country project. The men and women viewed the Mountford collection and listened to the Adnyamathanha songs.

The male elders were interested in the Mountford films from Nepabunna taken around 1937-39 while the female Elders looked at some drawings which relate to women’s business. Jacinta Koolmatrie from History Trust SA was brought in to assist the women.

One of the outcomes of this trip is for Elders to determine whether certain items should be restricted or open and provide feedback on terminology in catalogue descriptions.



South Australia Illustrated: The art of George French Angas

This exhibition highlighted the work of George French Angas (born London,1822), the eldest son of George Fife Angas, a principal planner of the South Australian colony. The younger Angas rejected his father's world of commerce and farming to follow a life involving art and nature, studying natural history painting and lithography before embarking on his travels.

With his impressive portfolio of watercolours, he sailed for London and in 1847 published a celebrated folio of hand-coloured lithographs South Australia Illustrated, the imagery of which has served ever since as a ‘snapshot’ of South Australia in 1844. The exhibition included original plates from the folio as well as enlarged graphic displays of selected plates for visitors to be able to closely view the detail of Angas’ work.

Number of attendees: 47,620

Lust for lifestyle: modern Adelaide homes 1950-1965

Lust for lifestyle was a collaborative exhibition that showcased modern living in a changing South Australia post World War II, where a booming economy and emerging consumer culture led to a desire for enjoyment and celebration of the pleasures of everyday life.

The exhibition was curated by Dr. James Curry (School of Architecture and Built Environment, University of Adelaide) and exhibited photographs, drawings, plans and newspaper and magazine articles of the era from State Library collections, as well as material from other organisations and private family records. It featured the diverse work of architects as well as video interviews with people who lived and worked in these remarkable buildings.

Number of attendees: 12,780

Our Footy, Our People, Our Stories – an exhibition co-created with South Australian National Football League (SANFL) featuring material from 145 years of great moments and achievements.

The exhibition highlights the collections of the SANFL History Centre’s, including medals, posters, photographs, guernseys, trophies, film and video, fan memorabilia and a seven-metre photograph of Adelaide Oval.

The Library will complement this material by including items from the library’s collections. Collection highlights include two Magarey Medals donated by the families of the 1929 winner Bob Snell, and Max Pontifex who won in 1932, as well as images from the Ken Farmer scrapbooks.

Exhibition highlights include:

  • recognition of the football career of the late great Russell Ebert OAM
  • 2 viewing areas to watch highlights of SANFL football, including grand finals, interstate games and Magarey Medal telecasts, some never-before-seen match footage
  • a seven-metre-wide panoramic Showdown photo at Adelaide Oval
  • a Magarey Medal display including the sketchbook from GW Cox jewellers showcasing their Magarey Medal designs dating back to 1932
  • the phenomenal contribution and evolution of women’s football

Number of attendees: 7,639

July 2021 – May 2022


















December 2021 – June 2022















June 2022

Christmas at Mortlock

Building on the success of last year, the Library together with SA Power Networks brought some Christmas cheer and magic to town by lighting up Adelaide’s biggest indoor Christmas tree in the Mortlock for all to enjoy. This year we introduced several supporting programs, including local school choirs, books in the book nook and Christmas storytelling by local authors and storytellers.

A recent donation was also displayed - a Father Christmas moveable book (1961) by Czechoslovakian paper artist Vojtěch Kubašta (b.1914 Vienna, d.1992 Prague). Kubašta was one of the most prolific and inventive paper engineers in the history of children’s pop-up books.

December 2021

Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature 2022

The Library successfully managed the biennial Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature 2022.

The awards highlight the importance of our unique South Australian writers and contribute to and support community engagement with literature They comprise of six national categories and five South Australian categories including three fellowships for South Australian winners.

The 2022 Adelaide Festival Awards for Literature were announced at Adelaide Writers’ Week as part of the 2022 Adelaide Festival.

Tara June Winch, an Australian (Wiradjuri) writer based in France, was awarded the Premier’s Award and the Fiction Award for her novel The Yield, described by the judges as an exceptional and defining work of Australian literature.

Total submissions: 605

March 2022

Children and Families Reading Space

The Library has announced its intention to create a dedicated space for children and families that will provide opportunities to read books from a curated collection, explore exhibitions, and play historic board games using facsimiles of games owned by the Library. Much of the material on display will come from the State Library’s Children’s Literature Research Collection. The children’s space will be located on the ground floor of the Institute Building.

March 2022

Summon Discovery Service

In December, Library implemented the new discovery product, Summon, to replace the old and unsupported Encore discovery service.

Summon provides a new quick search function that enables discovery using a single search box. This improved search capability offers a more integrated search ability for library catalogue, Library Guides and access to other electronic resources and databases.


December 2021

STEM Aboriginal Student Congress

The Library welcomed 23 students and teachers for Journey of discovery at the State Library of South Australia’ workshops. The groups went behind the scenes in the Mortlock chamber to discover how the Conservation Studio uses STEM methods to preserve the history and treasures of South Australia for future generations, a highlight for students was viewing the collections about Ngarrindjeri inventor David Unaipon.

16-17 September 2021

Discover Your State Library

A self-guided resource has been developed for schools Years F-6 or Years 7-12 and helps teachers and visitors to the State Library in planning a flexible on-site visit tailored to specific needs. The resource provides links and QR codes to experience State Library spaces, collections, and stories.

November 2021

Local/Family History Redesign

A discovery and options paper to inform local and family history services was received by the Board in July 2021 that included the following recommendations:

  • Development of a Community of Practice with a view to regular communications.
  • South Australian Public Library Network (SAPLN) involvement with the development of consistent user experience for research and input/UAT of LibGuides.
  • Prioritisation of need from the South Australian Public Library Network
  • The use of genealogy platforms such as Family Search and Ancestry for the delivery of State Library content.
  • Organisational membership with Genealogy SA.

This has resulted in the establishment of a project position to lead investigation into digitisation, discovery, and delivery of assets across the South Australian Public Library Network.

July 2021 – June 2022

Family fun at the State Library

Two new programs for children and families were introduced in April:

‘Build a bug’ – a school holiday program for children  to build their own bug inspired by the watercolour paintings of insects found in George French Angas’ South Australia Illustrated. A snapshot of some of the earliest views of South Australia in 1844, Angas’ works are currently on exhibition in the Library’s Treasures Wall.

‘Discover the State Library Family’ trail – a self-guided activity for families to take an adventure through the State Library to discover the many treasures and stories to be found.

Both activities are available on the Library’s website for families to use at home.

April 2022


December was the launch of the Untapped Collection which consists of over 160 previously out of print titles that are now made available for digital loan to the South Australian community – including 36 South Australian Authors.

The collection has also been made available through South Australian Public Libraries via BorrowBox.

December 2021

Children’s Literature Research Collection

The Library’s Children’s Literature Research Collection has featured as part of a series of Museum Showcases by the United Kingdom based Children’s History Society. Museum Showcase: A Chequered History | Children's History Society (

April 2022

Getting started with State Library Collections, resources and services

In 2021 a new program of professional development for school community libraries was offered under the series titled Getting started with State Library collections, resources, and services.  The series of professional development sessions attracted 85 participants throughout the year comprising of Librarians and Community Library Assistants from 24 regional School Community Library sites.

July 2021 – November 2022

Your State Library – Your Learning Destination

A full day of online professional development for educators was offered during the January school holidays. This event provided teacher awareness and strategies for engagement with learning resources, programs, and services of the State Library, with a focus on the Humanities curriculum and research. The event attracted 90 bookings from varying learning organisations across South Australia including teachers from metro and regional F-12, school community librarians, home educators and staff from professional organisations.  Recordings of the session are available for follow-up learning and sharing. 

January 2022




Aboriginal Reference Group

The Library has been working with State Records to create a shared Aboriginal Reference Group and had a first meeting in March that commenced with a smoking ceremony and welcome to country.

The Reference Group is a formal consultation body that will assist both organisations in examining policies and operations to ensure that implemented changes are culturally appropriate, develop consistency across agencies in engagement with Aboriginal people, management of collections that are significant to Aboriginal people to make it easier for Aboriginal people to use our services and access our collections.

December 2021 – June 2022

Creative Industries

The State Library supports and participates in major Adelaide festivals and events, providing much needed employment opportunities to creative industries. A highlight during the year was the inaugural Illuminate Festival, a winter event that invites the community to celebrate the artist creativity using art, light, and sound. The Library hosted two installations, working with talented artists and their support crews to offer an exciting spectacle to all that visited.

July 2021

Community Learning Partnerships

The Library has been working to foster and develop relationships with like-minded organisations for the presentation of community programs and events onsite. These are mutually beneficial and collaborative partnerships, expanding programs and introducing new audiences to the Library’s buildings, services, and collections, whilst supporting the partner organisations through the provision of a high-profile venue and large promotional reach.

Partnered programs offered during the year include:

  • The Friends of the State Library hosting the Right Reverend Chris McLeod, National Aboriginal Bishop of the Anglican Church of Australia, an Assistant Bishop in the Diocese of Adelaide, and Dean of St Peter’s Cathedral, presenting on the books in his life.
  • Walking tours hosted by Modernist Adelaide's Stuart Symon, providing an opportunity to immerse in the mid-century modern architectural revolution, when a new wave of modernist architecture redefined Adelaide’s skyline and streetscapes.
  • A “live and learn” talk to explore the early life of Ross Smith in South Australia before he became a war hero, and world-famous aviator who piloted the famous Vickers Vimy from London to Darwin in 1919.
  • Genealogy SA hosting Emily Richardson, Assistant Director, Adelaide Office National Archives Australia, presenting on the avenues to research the historical records of ANZAC service men and women.
  • The Royal Geographical Society of South Australia presenting a lecture by Professor Peter Veth, University of Western Australia, on the concepts of desert refugia, desert transformation model and the role of cryptic refugia and water points.
  • In partnership with the State Theatre Company, the State Library hosted a Tangent Talk about the play Antigone, exploring the themes of this cheeky and anarchic take on one of the world's most revered classic plays.
  • The Waste Land at 100 – a symposium to mark the 100th anniversary of the publication of T. S. Eliot’s The Waste Land, presented by the J M Coetzee Centre for Creative Critical Practice (JMCCCP) and the University of Adelaide’s Department of English, Creative Writing, and Film.
  • The Friends of the State Library hosting Stephanie Johnson, book publisher and urban and rural planner, talking about the books in her life.
  • Genealogy SA librarian Katrina McKinlay talking about how family history resources can bring your ancestors to life.
  • The Royal Geographical Society hosting Dr Boone Law, a geospatial scientist and archaeologist at the University of Adelaide, as he offers a brief overview of how aerial and satellite imaging has been applied to Australian archaeological contexts, offering new insights into the survival of the Western Desert First Nations people

September 2021

History Festival at the State Library

The Library was an energetic contributor to the History Festival presenting and hosting a range of events, including:

  • ‘An extraordinary mapmaker: the life and times of WH Edmunds, who created exquisite hand drawn maps of Adelaide, the suburbs and the hills, and some country localities from 1914 – 1940.
  • ‘Click: SA Professional photographers from 1850s to the early 1900s.
  • A talk exploring and highlighting resources for tracing Aboriginal family history.
  • a taste of wine history experience in the Mortlock Chamber with Wine SA.
  • bookbinding and book repair demonstrations.
  • an opportunity to view rare, beautiful, and historically significant works from the State Library’s rare books collection.
  • ‘Behind the Shelves’ tours to uncover the important work and collections of the State Library.
  • a tour of Ling House as featured in our Lust for Lifestyle exhibition.

May 2022

Illuminate Adelaide at the State Library

The Library collaborated with Illuminate Adelaide to host two events.

Acclaimed Australian artist Robin Fox presented Library of Light, an immersive laser and sound work installed in the Library’s Spence Wing glass foyer.

The presentation was inspired by Polish Australian artist Stanislaus Ostoja-Kotkowski (1922-1994) whose pioneering concepts using sound and laser image technology earned him an international reputation.

The Library holds a vast and rich collection of material relating to Ostoja-Kotkowski’s work that has been accepted into the Australian register of the UNESCO Memory.

Kaylene TV is a collaboration between APY lands indigenous artist Kaylene Whiskey and animator Jackson Lee.

Audiences experienced Whiskey’s work on a grand scale projected onto the façade of the historic Institute Building.

Whiskey’s art draws on that rich and eclectic set of influences to remix celebrity culture and remote community life, as pop idols like Tina Turner, Dolly Parton and Wonder Woman are dropped into the red dirt and blue skies of Central Australia.

July 2021

Festival City Stories

Festival City Stories is project co-developed between the State Library and Festival City Adelaide to capture and interpret the value and impact of our city’s festival sector. This 12-month project has been funded through a COVID-19 Arts Recovery Fund administered through DPC. Other contributing partners are Flinders University and South Australian Tourism Commission.

The project will engage with a broad cross-section of the South Australian festival ‘community’ to record their stories in written, audio, video and still image formats - to reflect the breadth and diversity of the festival industry.  Material created through the project will form part of the State Library’s collection.

August 2021

State Theatre Company of SA – Tangent Series

State Theatre Company of South Australia are now presenting the Tangent series of talks at the State Library. Before each show of State Theatre’s season opens, a panel of experts from the creative, academic, political, and medical worlds are brought together to discuss and debate the topics of each play. July’s Tangent talks include The First Nations Voice in Theatre, a panel discussing issues from the play The 7 Stages of Grieving.

July 2021

The Overland Telegraph Line: a transcultural history

The Library hosted an archivist for a three-month collaborative project to scope collection material and present key items in an online exhibition.  Led by the Australian Catholic University, research partners are the History Trust SA; South Australian Museum and State Library of South Australia.

November 2021

Tiny Oz – ABC TV Series

The Library collaborated with Australian production company Northern Pictures towards a new ABC TV three-part documentary series titled Tiny Oz, following the story of three model makers as they research and build models depicting historical scenes. Local model makers from South Australian based animation company Anifex and the SARMA (South Australian Railway Model Association) constructed a detailed model depicting the first hot air balloon ride over Adelaide in 1871.

Library staff provided background research material for the production and featured in the series which was filmed partly in the Mortlock Chamber.

The series premiered on ABC TV on 19th April at 8.30pm, with the model of a balloon flight over the Botanic Gardens displayed at the State Library simultaneously for visitors to view until end of May 2022.

August 2021- May 2022


Collab is a joint venture between the South Australian Museum, the History Trust of South Australia, the State Library of South Australia, the Art Gallery of South Australia along with the Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium to promote collaboration across member organisations and increase discovery of their digital collections. Collab supports innovation, new knowledge and entrepreneurship across Adelaide’s cultural precinct and showcases our digital expertise to the world.

The Collab group held a series of sessions to further collaboration between the member organisations, beginning with presentations by each organisation to inform on what they do, including things that most do not know about, how they currently collaborate and future opportunities to collaborate.

As part of the Collab group’s work in promoting collaboration across the member organisations and the discovery of their digital collections one of the Key projects is the Collab Digital Cultural Fellowship, which was awarded to the Growing Data Foundation. The fellowship’s intention is to encourage the engagement of external organisations with the digital collections to foster innovative and engaging products that are available to the public.

As part of the Fellowship, the Growing Data Foundation held two workshops to discuss and refine their deliverables as part of the Digital Cultural Fellowship. This first workshop focused on information for staff of the Collab Institutions, and the second focused on external engagement.

February 2022

Online Digital Newspapers

A collaboration between the South Australian Public Library Network and the State Library provides broader access for the South Australian community to PressReader, an online digital newspaper database, and other digital services through the Library. This collaboration presents a great opportunity for the Library to work in partnership with the Public Library Network to promote online newspapers, South Australian resources, special collections, and databases.

February 2022

Copyright Access Reform

National and State Libraries Australasia, the Australian Library and Information Association, the Australian Libraries and Archives Copyright Coalition and the Australian Digital Alliance supported proposed amendments in the Exposure Draft Copyright Amendment (Access Reform) Bill 2021 and Review of Technological Protection Measures Exceptions. Proposed amendments address long-held concerns regarding outdated copyright provisions and allow libraries to use contemporary technologies to provide faster and more equitable access to collections.

February 2022

Exploring My World, Exploring Board Games of the Past

The Library has adapted two of its current programs 'Exploring My World' and 'Exploring Board Games of the Past’ for use by the South Australian Public Library Network.  The programs were trialled with a public library and a school community library for suitability and have been adapted accordingly.  An online information session will be facilitated to support public library staff in the delivery of these programs.

March 2022

Representing Multicultural Australia in National and State Libraries ARC Grant

The Library is participating in a collaborative project to investigate the representation of histories and cultures of migrants from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in the National Library and select state library collections. The research is analysing the relevant policy environments, policies, and practices of four libraries, focusing on how libraries collect and make available material about migrants’ lives and their communities in the past and in the present. Benefits will include informed public debate about the contours of Australia’s history and heritage, and Australia’s identity as a multicultural nation.

March-December 2021

Professional Development virtual session

State Library partnered with the History Trust of South Australia to develop an evening teacher professional development virtual session for the History Festival. 34 teachers attended this virtual session, which supported programming for the HASS curriculum F-10 while also showcasing the digital resources available from the State Library and History Trust websites. A certificate of attendance was provided to attendees as part of the Australian professional standards for teachers.  

May 2022




Staff Experience Project

The State Library strategic plan highlights the need for a flexible, highly skilled team of employees and volunteers. During the year, the Staff Experience Project was activated to refine and review staff competencies to meet customer service role requirements. The competencies will inform future staff development including a training and assessment program for high priority skilled areas of digital literacy and customer service.

A self-assessment Digital Literacy Survey for service point staff will evaluate their proficiency in a variety of digital literacy skills and provide a broad team-based understanding of digital skills and guide the formation of a digital training program.

This will form a regular part of the Services Team Performance Development Program (PDP).

July 2021 – June 2022

Organisational Health and Culture

In August, the Library recruited a new Cultural Lead to:

  • Develop and implement systems and processes to measure and monitor the health and culture of the organisation, examining workforce survey data and recommending action to Executive.
  • Provide support to managers and coordinators as people leaders – particularly with regard to performance, coaching and training.
  • Work with and guide leaders to develop actionable and targeted change management implementation plans for each team.
  • Consider strategies for workforce reward and recognition.

August 2021

Culturally Safe Libraries – NSLA Culturally Safe Libraries Program Workshop

The State Library works with its national peers through the National and State Libraries of Australasia (NSLA) on projects of significance. The workshop focus was on engagement with Indigenous peoples, the provision of culturally safe places in our libraries and culturally appropriate use of our collections. The three-day workshop was structured around the principles and concepts in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Library, Information and Resource Network Protocols and was run remotely by a First Nations facilitator from the State Library of Queensland.

October 2021

SA Cyber Security Framework (SACFS) – Cyber Risk Mitigation

Work continues to implement the South Australian Cyber Security Framework (SACSF) as part of the Libraries Board’s cyber security uplift. 

State Library and Public Library Services staff undertook several Cyber Security Awareness training modules to increase cyber awareness of all staff. 

Many new policies and procedures as well as technical mitigations have been developed and implemented.

July 2021 – June 2022

Internal Procurement and Contract Framework

The State Library developed and implemented an Internal Procurement and Contract Framework, designed to align the Board’s procurement strategy and operation with the key principles and outcomes of the South Australian Government Procurement Framework and identifies the mechanisms by which the Board intends to achieve fit-for-purpose procurement outcomes.

July 2021 – June 2022







My Community

My community is a State Library program adapted for use by Public Libraries.  Aimed at 8 to12 year old’s, this resource invites children to explore their own community and its diversity of people, places and events. State Library resources can assist with research. An interactive map of the Peterborough community and the State Library, provides a stimulus for documenting and sharing community stories. 

November 2021

Nation Branding Project

In the first half of 2021, NATION were engaged to undertake a brand strategy exercise and define the South Australian Public Library Network (SAPLN) brand identity. The resulting outputs include internal and external facing brand architecture and a visual rebrand that will provide development of a state-wide marketing plan for future marketing and communications.

July – December 2021

Core Cultural Learning Program

The Libraries Board committed funds for the next three years for public library staff to participate in the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) CORE Competency course.  CORE aims to strengthen the cultural capability of an organisation, provide greater context to work with Indigenous peoples and communities, and help create a culturally safe workplace.

February 2022

Indigenous Literacy Foundation

In September 2021, over 8,400 books were distributed to remote communities in South Australia (compared to 5,500 in 2020). 3,060 of these books have been gifted to communities in the APY Lands.

Ten playgroups are now registered with the Book Buzz program and six additional sites have ordered book buzz kits. The kits include one of the following titles: Kutji, Kutjara, or Mankurpa and have been translated to Pitjantjatjara, with an English translation contained at the back.

Community publishing projects have been placed on indefinite hold due to the impact of Covid-19 and lockdowns and the subsequent inability to visit community.

September 2021

Kaltjiti (Fregon) Community Library 

Due to COVID-19 and the lockdown of APY Lands, work on the Kaltjiti community library stalled in 2021-22.  PLS will re-engage next year to finalise establishment of the community library.

July 2021 – June 2022 




Project LUCi

Project LUCi is a collaborative project to design a new and modern discovery layer for libraries and is being led by Scottish based software company SOLUS UK Ltd. Throughout 2021-22 Public Library Services staff collaborated with a network group to undertake testing and receive feedback to help shape the product. The project’s planned completion date is December 2022.

July 2021 – June 2022

Improve Digital Touchpoints

Successful completion of rebuild of 121 library Enterprise websites. Enterprise is the discovery tool used by customers to discover library services and content and this stage of the project included making live 116 websites with the remaining 4 in active development.

July 2021 –   June 2022

CollectionHQ Library Collection staff training

Public Library Services worked with the vendor of CollectionHQ (a library materials collection analytics software package) to provide training opportunities for staff within the public library network. This training will improve staff access to a range of simple reports within the product and assist their understanding on how the collection is used by the community. 

Training opportunities are recorded and made available on the SharePoint site, OnePlace, for viewing and sessions range from beginner to advanced, through to specific training for multi-branch sites.  


Age of Collections

Public Library Services has completed one and a half years of active engagement with 54 libraries across South Australian Public Library Network on the Age of Collections Project. At commencement of the project, 170,000 library items were identified as exceeding the network agreed age of collection standards of 10 years. Through collection weeding, 47 libraries have removed approximately 60,000 items, or about thirty three percent of the targeted number. 

Public Library Services continues to support libraries with collection maintenance to increase the relevance of the items held and improve collection access for customers. 

July 2021 – June 2022

Quarterly Dead on Arrival Report

It is important for public libraries to have collections that the community wants to borrow.  In 2020, South Australian Public Library Network agreed that the lowest acceptable figure for new items added to the collection (6-18 month previous) which have not been borrowed would be 5% or less.  Since April 2021, a high-level quarterly report is provided and is accessible for all libraries within the public library network.  This provides a level of transparency not seen previously about the performance of items purchased across the whole state.  Staff can use online reporting tools and or request further assistance from Public Library Services to view detailed data on what customers are not borrowing to analyse their interests and adjust spending on collections. 

July 2021 – June 2022

Strategic Collections Group

The Strategic Collections Group comprises of staff responsible in areas of collection management from across metropolitan and country libraries in the State.

The group is required to: 

  • develop a business case for network coordination of collections and content development to determine possible savings and efficiencies, 
  • establish a collection development framework for the State, incorporating regional collection development, and
  • undertake comprehensive engagement processes with SAPLN OneCard staff as required.

The group has met three times and is reviewing public network priorities and developing options for potential projects in 2022.

July 2021 – June 2022

South Australia’s Memories – Local and Family History Project

Public Library Services commenced an ambitious local and family history project, South Australia’s Memories, to link local history collections held by public libraries to the collections of the State Library. The project’s focus is to determine and implement a locally developed and culturally appropriate model for equitable and open digital access to South Australian cultural heritage and genealogy resources. These resources provide network and sector partnership opportunities for genealogy and local history research, lifelong learning, leadership, and promotion of cultural identity. The project will develop a shared, enduring platform that is cost effective and easy to manage. This combined expertise will focus on improving collection discovery, access, and preservation for South Australian local heritage and genealogical resources.

January – March 2022

Provisions of eCollections to the Public

The digital content panel was awarded to two new suppliers and ensures successful provision and more accurate user statistics of eCollections that are increasing in demand.

Public Library Services continues to work with digital content vendors to gain best value from the grant funding provided for eMagazines. The titles that are unused by customers have been reviewed, ensuring that the remaining titles and topics reflect customer interest based on usage statistics. This adjustment to content has also manifested in a price review with the vendor.

January – March 2022




being digital – Adult Digital Literacy Programs



The State Government has directed $1 million from existing 2021-22 funding to be reallocated to a new formal adult digital literacy program for public libraries. being digital is a program and theme to promote digital assistance and learning to adult South Australians within South Australian Public Libraries.

Network libraries focus on building digital literacy skills, in particular, the ‘digital basics’ (e.g., being safe online) to help people participate with confidence in today’s digital world.

Sub-Project Teams have formed and are meeting to focus on and develop related areas, such as Program Development, Staff Training, Equipment and Infrastructure, and Advocacy.

November 2021 – June 2022

New add-on feature for existing Blue Cloud Mobile Application

Public Library Services vendor, SirsiDynix, released a new add-on feature for the Blue Cloud Mobile application, that provides RFID patron self-check-in/out capability that works on both Apple and Android devices.

The new feature has been approved and purchased for all 150 South Australian public library circulating branches and will be live by end of 2022.

July 2021 – June 2022

Libraries Board Innovation Fund

The Libraries Board Innovation Fund is an initiative to inspire the South Australian Public Library Network to explore and create a future where libraries will continue to be vital community hubs for the communities they serve. The Innovation Fund supports projects developed in partnership with local governments to better utilise their public libraries in addressing local needs and providing new library services with lasting benefits to their communities.

July 2021 – June 2022




Public Library Services and SA Museum Partnership

Young Explorers Program Resource Collection

Libraries SA began collaboration with the SA Museum to curate reading lists for the museum’s early years program, Young Explorers.

The Young Explorers program is aimed at children aged 3 to 5, offering them an interactive experience combining objects, stories, song, rhyme and play on a monthly theme.

The curated lists allow for exposure of quality children’s literature on the themes, which are available in the OneCard public library network.

The lists offer an opportunity to extend learning for participants by clicking on titles to search for or reserve from their local public library.

July 2021

Chitter Chatter: Speech and language in the early years

Public Library Services partnered with Raising Literacy Australia to engage a speech pathologist to facilitate a professional development session for library staff working in children’s services. 17 children’s services officers attended the session, which explored communication development in children, speech sound development and expected age of acquisition, the components of language and expected age of acquisition, and how literacy experiences underpin them all.

The program resulted in many strategies and practical tips for attendees to take back and apply within their library service.

September 2021

Tech Savvy Seniors program

Tech Savvy Seniors is a partnership between Public Library Services, the South Australian Public Library Network and Telstra. In 2020-21:

  • 965 seniors accessed digital literacy workshops
  • Workshops were delivered across 22 country library branches
  • 98% of the participants agreed that the trainer and training resources were helpful and informative.
  • 66% of participants feel more confident using tablets, computers, or smart phones.
  • 64% of participants intend to access information online.

Long-term outcomes six weeks after the course saw an improvement in wellbeing outcomes and 67% gained new skills to use in everyday life to improve active ageing. 

July 2021 – February 2022

Antimicrobial Awareness Week

SA Health liaised with Public Library Services to promote Antimicrobial Awareness Week; an initiative organised by the World Health Organisation to raise awareness of antibiotic resistance.  

To develop awareness among primary school children, a colouring/drawing competition was promoted through public libraries. 

October 2021

Electoral Commission of South Australia

Public Library Services partnered with the Electoral Commission of South Australia to provide a Voter Engagement Program for interested libraries. 27 participating libraries became Election Ambassadors, receiving information packs that contained accessible and inclusive resources to share with customers. This enabled libraries to communicate safe voting options and provide enrolment support for people in their communities.

March 2022




Professional Development: ALIA Proficiency Program

Public Library Services facilitate the Australian Library and Information Association Proficiency Program. This year, a total of 33 network staff, along with two State Library of South Australia staff, took part in the professional development program. The aim of this four-month online course is to introduce new library staff to four basic library competencies. Due to the online nature of this program, it continued during COVID-19 restrictions.

July – September 2021

Professional Development: Accessing the collections of your State Library

In this interactive session delivered by Public Library Services and State Library of South Australia, staff from the South Australian Public Library Network were introduced to the Children's Literature Research Collection, examining ways for curatorial staff and educators to collaborate and bring these collections (and their stories) to life. Public Library staff were able to explore resources and services that can enrich their children's library learning programs. Feedback from public library staff was overwhelmingly positive, with staff indicating that they are more likely to access resources from the State Library for their communities after attending the sessions. 

July 2021 – June 2022

Professional Development: Implementation of the Reading and Literacy Framework

Following the development of the Reading and Literacy Framework, an implementation plan and video was developed that introduced the framework to network staff. Several information sessions were delivered both online and face to face and the published framework was distributed to all councils and stakeholders. Early Literacy and children’s library staff were invited to attend a series of Reading and Literacy Framework workshop sessions, focusing on unpacking each key area of the framework through sharing library network examples to prompt discussion, reflection, and future planning. 

July 2021 – February 2022

Getting started with State Library collections, resources and services - online professional development program for school community libraries.

In 2021 a new program of professional development for school community libraries was scheduled under the series titled Getting started with State Library collections, resources, and services. Consultation with a small focus group of school community libraries in late 2020 identified a series of topics as well as frequency, day, and timing. The delivery method for the professional development utilises the video-conferencing platform Microsoft TEAMS. The series of professional development sessions that included information on accessing State Library Collections and Family History and Genealogy services, attracted 85 participants throughout the year comprising of Librarians and Community Library Assistants from 24 regional school community library sites.

All sessions are recorded to enable staff to access training post-delivery and during 2022 the program has been extended to Metropolitan and Country library staff.

July 2021 – June 2022

STEM Aboriginal Student Congress 2021

The STEM Aboriginal Student Congress is a state Department for Education initiative to engage and inspire the next generation of young Aboriginal scientists, technologists, engineers, and mathematicians. 

The Congress explores how STEM connects to Aboriginal life by highlighting that many Aboriginal science, maths and engineering practices and knowledges either preceded or connect to western STEM knowledge.

Public Library Services facilitated the delivery of two sessions, which were attended by students and teachers from Kaurna Plains School, Woodville High School and Adelaide High School, Aldinga Beach, Seaford Secondary College, and Playford International College.

Students and teachers enjoyed State Library Collections that included crayon drawings created by children from Ernabella in 1941 and behind the scenes experiences, such as the demonstrated microfilming and digitisation of items from the Narungga Nation, showcasing changes in technology over time. 

A real highlight for the students was viewing library collections about Ngarrindjeri inventor, David Unaipon (one of the students is a direct relation).

The 1909 volume of Australian Patents includes his patent application for the sheep shearing mechanism (featured on the $50 Australian note); tying the tour directly to the Year 7 and 8 students’ study of David Unaipon’s inventions.

A pamphlet from 1951 written by David Unaipon himself, which was titled My Life Story, also brought the individual story behind the inventions to life.

There were 23 student attendees over the two days.

September 2021

South Australian Public Library Network Performance Framework

The SAPLN Performance Framework is the result of two years of work undertaken by the South Australian Public Library Network to identify key outcomes we want to achieve through the work of public libraries and develop appropriate measures for each outcome.

It is a framework that is based on the PuMP Blueprint, a deliberate, step-by-step performance measurement process that makes measuring what matters faster, easier, more meaningful and engaging.

Once the Framework was established, work commenced to build a data warehouse to collect, capture and distribute data identified in the Framework’s outcomes measures.

Public Library Services engaged the Social Research Centre to develop a survey to library members. The survey includes questions for which we cannot get information from our systems. The first 20,000 monthly surveys were distributed to registered library users in May 2022. In addition to this, a centralised data repository was created on the Network’s Intranet for most of the Network’s reporting requirements.

The SAPLN Performance Framework is a living document and will evolve over time to ensure libraries are responsive to the changing needs of our communities. It is a practical measurement approach to ensure SAPLN identify KPIs that are meaningful, and we measure what really matters to public libraries and their users in South Australia.

July 2021 – June 2022

Your State Library – Your Learning Destination

In January, the Education Team facilitated a full day of online professional development sessions for educators. The sessions enabled educators to discover how the resources within the State Library can support their programs. The event attracted 90 bookings from various learning organisations across South Australia, including teachers from metro and regional F-12 schools, school community libraries, professional organisations, and home educators.

January 2022

Inspired Libraries presentation

In March 2022, three individual two-hour online professional development sessions were offered to 150 staff across the network.  These sessions showcased strategies to reinvigorate print usage, productivity of space and best practice in library layout, visual merchandising, and promotion.   

The presenter advocates for a continuous improvement approach, advising staff that consistent reviews of collection layouts and promotions can improve both customer access and loan statistics.  

March 2022

Digital Skills self-assessment

Public Library Services collaborated with a network-based working group to develop and deliver a digital skills self-assessment survey for network staff. This survey was designed as part the Being Digital program, with the dual intentions of gauging network interest in digital skills, training and assessing staff confidence levels when dealing with public queries concerning digital topics. Public Library Services received 680 survey responses, which will inform future network training. Library managers were also provided a copy of their sites’ data to facilitate further action if required.  

March 2022

School Community Libraries Local Agreements

Public Library Services worked closely with the Department for Education and the Local Government Association in the development of local agreements between schools, the Libraries Board and Councils in the delivery of library services and programs through the School Community Library (SCL) Program.

The aim of the project is to provide flexibility and clarify expectations of each partner.  The project methodology included:

  • the development of general operational guidelines for the effective local management of SCLs to support the induction of new principals and staff to the SCL program and guide the provision of effective library services at individual sites
  • consultation with funding partners, including principals of SCLs, library managers and council staff and elected members to establish individual agreements for all SCLs which provide for agreed flexibility within local contexts, and establish expectations of each local partner
  • establishing a Project Reference Group to ‘test’ the project deliverables
  • investigating how the Libraries Board grant funding is applied across SCLs.

Roll out of the local agreements are planned in term 3, 2022.


Corporate performance summary

Please refer to the information provided in the table above, under the heading ‘Agency Specific Objectives and Performance.

Employment opportunity programs

Program name




Agency performance management and development systems

Performance management and development system


The Department of Premier and Cabinet’s Performance Development Planning (PDP) was in place throughout the year

95% of staff have completed their PDP

Work health, safety and return to work programs

Program name


Flu vaccination program

55% of staff participated in the flu vaccination program

Mental Health First Aid training

3 staff completed Mental Health First Aid training

WHS and IM Management System

Developed and maintained by the Department of the Premier and Cabinet and reported on centrally

WHS and IM training

92% of staff have completed mandatory WHS and IM training

Ergonomic Assessments

85% of staff have completed ergonomic assessments

Workplace injury claims

Current year

Past year


% Change
(+ / -)

Total new workplace injury claims








Seriously injured workers*




Significant injuries (where lost time exceeds a working week, expressed as frequency rate per 1000 FTE)




*number of claimants assessed during the reporting period as having a whole person impairment of 30% or more under the Return to Work Act 2014 (Part 2 Division 5)

Work health and safety regulations

Current year 2021-22

Past year


% Change
(+ / -)

Number of notifiable incidents (Work Health and Safety Act 2012, Part 3)




Number of provisional improvement, improvement and prohibition notices (Work Health and Safety Act 2012 Sections 90, 191 and 195)




Return to work costs**

Current year 2021-22

Past year


% Change
(+ / -)

Total gross workers compensation expenditure ($)




Income support payments – gross ($)




**before third-party recovery
Data for previous years is available at: Libraries Board of South Australia Annual Report data - Dataset -

Executive employment in the agency

Executive classification

Number of executives



Data for previous years is available at: Libraries Board of South Australia Annual Report data - Dataset -

The Office of the Commissioner for Public Sector Employment has a workforce information page that provides further information on the breakdown of executive gender, salary and tenure by agency.



2020-21 Annual Report | From the Chair Overview: About the agency | The agency's performance | Financial performance | Risk Management | Reporting required under other acts or regulationsPublic complaints