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German Resources in Britain (GRIB) is a network of organisations committed to increasing awareness of the rich variety of German language resources in Britain.
The primary aim of the network is to create, maintain and develop an online gateway offering information on and access to different institutions with relevant library and archival holdings. Our target audience includes professional researchers and librarians, students and teachers in all sectors of education, and the interested general public. As a not-for-profit organisation, GRIB is unable to raise its own funds and thus requires support from external sponsors in order to fulfil our goal of providing an effective and valuable resource for German Studies in the UK. This document aims to provide a comprehensive overview of the Network's goals, organisational structure and activities. Combined with the related 'Projected Costs' document, it also provides a projected five-year cost analysis of GRIB, including developments to greatly increase the impact of the Network and its activities.
On the invitation of the Goethe-Institut London Library, representatives of the British Library German Collection, the London Library German Collection, the German Historical Institute and the Wiener Library met to discuss possible co-operation within the framework of a 'German Resources Network' in London.
The impetus for the project was the idea of providing the academic world, as well as the public in general, with a single information source which would provide access to the diverse collections of German-related materials held by the participating institutions. During the initial discussion phase the participants agreed that the most effective way of achieving this aim would be to provide a single, 'one-stop' website which would provide simple access to the catalogues and services of the participating organisations.
After the collective project co-operation had been agreed on, the founding members met up regularly to work on the details of the website concept and to discuss questions regarding the technical implementation and necessary requirements for linking up the organisations' catalogue systems. With regard to the provision of resources, it soon became clear that none of the founding members were in a position to commit substantial financial sums or manpower. The British Library, the London Library and the Wiener Library were able to provide the necessary personnel for the project development phase. Furthermore the German Historical Institute and the Goethe- Institut envisaged being able to make a financial contribution to the development of an IT concept.
Strategic aims and objectives
The principal goals and objectives of GRIB are:
- to create a label for German-related resources in the UK
- to present and facilitate access to German-related resources in the UK
- to promote and increase the use of German-related resources in the UK, increasing reader and user numbers
- to provide comprehensive information services through joint action
- to encourage and enable mutual support of member libraries in improving services to their users
- to raise the profile of individual member institutions
- to encourage and enable further institutions in the UK to take part in the GRIB project
- to provide training for interns in the field of German-related collections, providing experience in research, website content development and administration etc.
- to ensure appropriate and effective governance and financial management arrangements are in place for the conduct of GRIB business
- to develop and implement a robust advocacy and marketing strategy, to raise the profile of the GRIB externally and to communicate effectively with members