Research is central to our role as the national library of the United Kingdom. It helps us to share our collections and intellectual heritage with people across the globe. You can read about the role of research in our strategic vision, Living Knowledge.

We lead and collaborate with specialists from other cultural organisations and universities on research of all kinds. You can read about our research activities in our Research Reports.

 

What we do

Library staff have extensive research expertise, and their knowledge of our collections underpins many of the Library’s activities, including our exhibitions and learning programmes.

We work in partnership to deliver research projects supported by national and international funding bodies.

We work with a range of partners and funders to offer a variety of fellowship programmes for scholars to pursue their own research interests and develop professional expertise. Find out more about our fellowship opportunities.

We support postgraduate research through a range of programmes for doctoral students. Find out more about our collaborative doctoral studentships, PhD placement scheme and training events for doctoral students.

We play an active role in the national research landscape and contribute to the development of research policy in the UK. This expertise informs our own policy for good research practice at the Library. Find out more about our research policy work.

Get in touch

Find out how to propose a research collaboration with the British Library.

If have questions about research collaboration at the British Library, please contact the Research Development team.

How we collaborate

Doctoral research

We support postgraduate research through our Reading Rooms and online resources, through collaborative projects, and through research training events.

Projects and partnerships

We actively lead on and support research.

Proposing a new research collaboration with the British Library

An overview of the internal review process for new research collaboration proposals at the British Library.

Research expertise

Our research, professional and methodological expertise covers all disciplines and spans traditional and digital scholarship in all its forms.

Fellowships

We work with a range of partners and funders to offer a variety of fellowship programmes for projects based at the Library, and grants to support individual research using the Library’s collections.

Policy

As the national library of the United Kingdom, we are an integral part of the national research infrastructure and have an active approach to research and higher education policy.

News

Collaborative PhD opportunities

13 April 2022

Collaborative PhD opportunities

PhD placement opportunities

31 January 2022

New PhD placement opportunities

Publication of 2019-20 Research Report

25 January 2022

Publication of 2019-20 Research Report

Blog posts

Medieval and Renaissance Women: PhD placement

Monday, May 23, 2022

The British Library is currently digitising some of its manuscripts, rolls and charters connected with women from Britain and across Europe, from the period between 1100 and 1600. You can read more about the project on the Medieval Manuscripts Blog....

Importing images into Zooniverse with a IIIF manifest: introducing an experimental feature

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Digital Curator Dr Mia Ridge shares news from a collaboration between the British Library and Zooniverse that means you can more easily create crowdsourcing projects with cultural heritage collections. There's a related blog post on Zooniverse, Fun with IIIF. IIIF...

Making British Library collections (even) more accessible

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Daniel van Strien, Digital Curator, Living with Machines, writes: The British Library’s digital scholarship department has made many digitised materials available to researchers. This includes a collection of digitised books created by the British Library in partnership with Microsoft. This...

The Lotus Sutra Manuscripts Digitisation Project: the collaborative work between the Heritage Made Digital team and the International Dunhuang Project team

Monday, March 14, 2022

Digitisation has become one of the key tasks for the curatorial roles within the British Library. This is supported by two main pillars: the accessibility of the collection items to everybody around the world and the preservation of unique and...

More blog posts