Budget cuts bite National Library of Australia's digital archiving ambitions

22 jobs to go, which should make the Library 'more agile'

Malcolm Turnbull's all-digital, all-agile government's cuts to the National Library of Australia will probably lead to a scaling back of its digitisation efforts.

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation is reporting that a memo has gone out to the NLA's 415 staff saying that 22 jobs – a little over five per cent of total staff – need to be eliminated to meet a savings target of AU$4.4 million.

The memo said the largest reduction will come from “curtailing the library's digitisation project”.

The NLA has been spent some years improving digital access to its collections. As well as digitising government records from the pre-Internet era, it's been offering newspaper archives and its collection of books.

The news of impending cuts come as the NLA is preparing an upgrade to its Trove newspaper archive portal. The Trove 7 iteration is due to go live at the end of this week.

The library also maintains PANDORA, an archive of Australian Internet pages it established in 1996, the same year that Brewster Kahle created Archive.org. While nowhere near the scale of the Wayback Machine, PANDORA's archive is currently 18.5 TB spanning 44,058 titles and nearly 370 million files. ®

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