Our major winter exhibition celebrated the science of Francis
Crick and James Watson (DNA), Alexander
Fleming (penicillin), and Wilhelm Roentgen (X-rays), the literature
of Samuel Beckett and the peace programme of Nelson Mandela, among
others. The lives of thirty Nobel laureates were explored and their
creative environments - including Cambridge, Paris, Vienna, Chicago
and Tokyo - portrayed. The exhibition used contemporary sources,
personal objects and interactive displays to show how these centres
attracted talent and enabled creative collaboration, but were also
arenas of competition and rivalry.
Alongside the exhibition we ran Creative
a hugely popular series of talks and debates in which leading figures
addressed creativity in their sphere. Speakers included Baroness
Susan Greenfield on the search for the creative mind, Lord Puttnam
on the creative producer, Professor Lisa Jardine on the creative
scientist and the Rt Hon Tony Benn MP on the creative statesman.
The series was sponsored by the Arts and
Humanities Research Council (AHRC). The
Council's Chief Executive, Professor Philip
Esler, said that 'the events gave scientists,
the creative industries and entrepreneurs
excellent opportunities to hear some of the
UK's leading creative talent offer guidance
on how best to harness creativity in the
service of research, business and public
While Britain's population is only 1 per
cent of the world's, we account for 15
per cent of the creative industries' global
GDP, as Sir Digby Jones pointed out at
the launch of the Business & IP Centre.
The AHRC and the Library play important
roles in the transfer of knowledge and
inspiration into creative enterprise,
and recognise the great advantage of
increasing our collaboration in this area.
The Business & IP Centre has achieved
unprecedented coverage for the Library in the UK business press.
Three articles devoted to the Centre appeared in the Financial
Times in 2005/06. One article - which described the Library
as 'a treasure chest of information' - featured bespoke tailor Imtaz
Khaliq who has used the Centre for inspiration and market research.
The groundbreaking one-to-one advice sessions run in the Centre
by The Body Shop founder Dame Anita
Roddick were also covered, resulting in overwhelming demand.
The March launch of the Centre resulted in another piece in the
FT - and in many other media.
The Centre was covered in 130
articles, achieving a potential
readership of some 50 million.
The equivalent advertising spend
for that level of visibility is
around £870,000. This underlines
how successful the Library has
been at leveraging its resources,
in order to raise awareness of the
Centre amongst entrepreneurs
and SMEs, and attract new users.
The extensive coverage has
helped spread the word about
the Library's contemporary
relevance. It certainly helps
to deliver the vision that we
are here to help everyone
who wants to do research.
From the outset, the Business & IP
Centre has been a collaborative project.
Our partnerships with highly respected
enterprise support organisations have
complemented our own services.
For example, the Patent Office, ideas21
and Business Plan Services have worked
alongside our information experts to
deliver a stimulating events programme.
OneLondon and the Dynamic Asian
Women's Network have helped us broaden
the diversity of our user base, while the
Camden Business Forum and Centa have
introduced us to local businesses and
opened up our incomparable resources
to new audiences.
Exceeding our targets
Over 25,000 users have benefited from the Business & IP Centre
since it opened as a pilot in May 2004 and in 2005/06 we issued
over 6,000 new Reader
Passes for business. In the same year our information experts
and our accredited partners delivered almost 1,000 business advice
sessions on a wide range of topics.
We exceeded all but one of our London
Development Agency targets for participants
in these workshops and events.
45% on a target of 15%
- Black and minority ethnic groups:
32% on a target of 29%
- People with disabilities:
4% on a target of 5%.