Ireland’s Minister for Rural and Community Development, Mr Michael Ring T.D, announced last week that the Irish government would be making a major investment into digital services and facilities in public libraries.
This investment is part of Ireland’s “Our Public Libraries 2022 – Inspiring, Connecting and Empowering Communities” initiative which aims to develop Ireland’s public library service over a five-year period from 2017.
€7.8 million has just been allocated by the Irish Government. This, will be extremely valuable to public sector suppliers looking for IT tenders and technology opportunities.
Government Opportunities has reported that this investment will enable ICT infrastructure upgrades, meeting space technologies and digital learning suites in public libraries across Ireland.
When announcing the investment at the South Dublin County Library, Mr Ring noted that the investment will:
“Enhance the technological capacity across the library network and will further position our public libraries as an invaluable community resource…
The funding will support a programme of ICT upgrades and developments to ensure libraries can provide a service that is not only in line with the needs of library users, but which can also deliver new and innovative services.”
Broken down, the €7.8 million investment comprises €5.2 million from Minister Ring’s department and a further €2.6 million contribution from local authorities.
What is the Irish government purchasing?
Many IT tenders will come from this investment as it enables the provision of ICT upgrades, technologies, and facilities, for up to 300 public libraries. The Irish government plans to purchase the following goods:
- iPads/tablets/smart devices for users and for staff to assist users
- Computers and workstations including image deployment technology
- Software to support design, gaming, and coding
- Meeting space technology
- Podcasting equipment and workstations
- Mobile LCD screens with audio
- Interactive whiteboards
- Digital training suites
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