SCONUL seeking assessment panel for the Library Design Awards 2025

04 March 2024      Jenelle Negraeff, Access Scheme Admin, administrator

SCONUL is seeking expressions of interest from colleagues who would be like to be part of the assessment panel for the Library Design Awards. There are up to eight places available on the panel and we are seeking library directors or deputies who have an interest in, and experience of, effective academic library design.

SCONUL’s Library Design Awards have been running every three years since 1973, with the most recent winners being announced in 2019 https://www.sconul.ac.uk/page/library-design-award . As a result of the pandemic, the awards were paused and we are now returning to them with updated and new categories to reflect post-pandemic realities. 

The next round of awards will take place in 2025. We are retaining a category focused primarily on space: excellence and innovation in library space planning and design. This category will include repurposed, refurbished, rebuilt and new build spaces, with a continued emphasis on creativity and impact on users, rather than purely architectural merit. This category is open to larger or smaller projects with an emphasis on what has been delivered for library users.

We are also introducing a new category: excellent and innovation in library service planning and design with a similar focus on creativity and impact for users, rather than on back-office functions, efficiencies or other functions. 

The assessment panel will be tasked with developing detailed criteria for the awards for consideration by the SCONUL Board before taking on the judging function. The call for applications for the award will be in the Autumn. The panel will convene to develop the criteria and then again to prepare the call. A final judging meeting will take place at the end of April 2025.

In selecting our panel members, we will be seeking representation from across the SCONUL community, both geographically and from different types of institution. If you are interested in being part of the panel please submit a short statement highlighting your areas of experience and engagement in library design and how you would both contribute and benefit to the Library Design Awards panel. Statements should not be more than 300 words and can be sent as emails to ann.rossiter@sconul.ac.uk . The deadline for receipt of expressions of interest is 29th March. Members of the SCONUL Board will then select a representative panel and applicants will be informed of the outcome by early/mid-April.