Research Activities

Our curatorial expertise and research partnerships cover all disciplines, including: arts & humanities; social sciences; science, technology & medicine; and interdisciplinary area studies.

We have particular expertise in collections-based and archival research, conservation, digital preservation, digital scholarship and large-scale data analytics. The Alan Turing Institute, based at the British Library, will become a major national resource for research and collaboration around data science.

As a national library, we work with institutions across the UK and internationally to commission, undertake and support research for public benefit. We often work with partners and stakeholders to help define policy and practice for our sector.

Our own research activities range in scope and scale from short placements for doctoral students to longitudinal studies and large scale multi-partner collaborations tackling urgent challenges for research infrastructure across Europe and beyond. We also play a key role in research information infrastructure through service development and delivery.

Research plays a key role in interrogating and refining understanding of our historic collections. This in turn enhances the impact of major exhibitions and our learning programme. Other projects are exploring the emerging research potential of our digital resources, such as the UK Web Archive.

Research also underpins our remit to advance knowledge and mutual understanding around the world. This includes major EU- and UK Research Council-funded collaborative projects, contributions to international training networks, and a special fellowship programme with Chevening, the UK government's international awards scheme aimed at developing global leaders.