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Cambridge Digital Library is the home for the discovery of digitised material and research outputs from the University of Cambridge and beyond.

Over the course of six centuries Cambridge University Library's collections have grown from a few dozen volumes into one of the world's great libraries, with an extraordinary accumulation of material. The collections cover every conceivable aspect of human endeavour, spanning most of the world's cultural traditions.

Wherever possible the Digital Library seeks to enhance its digital collections by aligning them with scholarly research. Examples of this include not only collaborations with research projects based here within Cambridge University Library, such as the Taylor-Schechter Genizah Research Unit and the Darwin Correspondence Project, but also those from further afield such as the Newton Project and the Darwin Manuscripts Project, which is based at the American Museum of Natural History. The Sanskrit Collection, Spanish Chapbooks collection and Board of Longitude collection have all been significantly enriched through major AHRC research projects.

Another goal is to make content from the Digital Library freely available for use within teaching and research. Copyright and licensing will not always permit this, but where it is possible the library can provide good quality images, texts and metadata for download and reuse.

Given Cambridge’s heritage, the Digital Library is also acutely aware of the need to preserve the work it does for future generations. With further funding from the Polonsky Foundation it is currently collaborating with Bodleian Libraries in Oxford on a project to enhance its digital preservation programme.

The Cambridge Digital Library team also provide advice and facilitate training through one-to-one and group workshops in several aspects of digital libraries:

  • Data transformation, sustainability and interoperability
  • Research impact and content management
  • Technical aspects of project planning and bid writing
  • Metadata standards (TEI, EAD, METS/MODS)
  • Transcriptions and digital editions
  • Library/Research partnerships