The Institute Appeal
The Appeal Projects
The Appeal supports three Projects and ensures sustainability for the Library, Archives and Museum, which need to be properly maintained as new material, new technologies and new means of providing information to both scholars and the general public become available. Establishment of the Fund is to ensure the Institute can service the changing and growing external demands for research and information.
(i) The Archive Project
The Archives provide an outstanding resource for scholars worldwide researching the early polar expeditions, the development of scientific research in Antarctica and the Arctic, and the geo-political and commercial interests in these regions.
The Archive Project aims are:
- to develop a pro-active approach to the acquisition of Archival materials;
- to improve accessibility to the Archives for scholars globally;
- to enhance the conservation of materials held in the Archives;
- to develop Internet-based databases of the manuscript, pictorial and photographic materials;
- to create Internet-based resources which provide direct access to certain materials;
- to fund an Archivist to sustain these activities, and the information technology requirements;
- to link research and archive management through publication of archival research;
- to liaise with the Museum project to enable display of documentary and other materials.
(ii) The Library Project
One of the Library's greatest strengths is its ability to collect and process information published in many languages; seventy-two are currently represented in the collection. This is only achieved by employing staff with high-level bibliographic and language skills. The Institute is dedicated to making this information as widely available as possible and maintains a website which attracts approaching 200,000 hits each month. The Library Project seeks to develop these resources by expanding its subject-specific and regional directories and databases, and by extending its publication programme, the scholarly quarterly Polar Record and a new Occasional Publications Series.
The Library Project aims are:
- to continue the design and development of Internet resources to meet the needs of all with interests in the Arctic and Antarctic;
- to fund bibliographers with language and information technology skills, and to broaden the Library's capacity by facilitating multi-lingual access;
- to expand its comprehensive acquisitions programme to include as many as possible of the major disciplinary scientific journals, in which an increasing proportion of significant Antarctic and Arctic research is now published;
- to establish regionally-based information services, covering Internet-based and published sources of scientific and commercial value;
- to enhance publications through the Polar Record, and to provide sponsorship of commercial monographs in an Occasional Publications Series.
(iii) The Museum Project
The Museum Project aims to modernise the Institute's Museum for the educational benefit of a wider public. It holds excellent collections related to the Heroic Age of polar exploration, including much material that at present cannot readily be displayed.
The Museum Project aims are:
- to modernise and extend the displays so that the material is presented so as to enhance its educational value;
- to extend the acquisitions policy in order to supplement the existing display potential;
- to re-structure displays to provide focus on historic expeditions, the connection between early exploration and modern scientific activity, and the polar regions' critical influence on environmental change;
- to collect digital imagery of artefacts from the "Heroic Age" and to create a "Virtual Polar Museum" in various forms (CD, Internet) as an educational and research resource;
- to fund a Curator/Education Officer to sustain these activities.