Model Libraries at South African Universities Support Senior Researchers

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The newly opened Rhodes University (South Africa) Research Commons, a scholarly common room for senior postgraduate students and academics, is one of six new library facilities recently opened at University of Cape Town, University of the Witwatersrand, University of KwaZulu Natal and Universities of Pretoria.

Supported by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the initiative to create model university libraries includes investments to develop specialized facilities, shared technologies, and highly-trained professional librarians to increase library support for researchers at each institution.

The Corporation’s program reflects the needs of university administrators who have identified modern libraries as a top priority and indispensable for nurturing the next generation of African academics and educational leaders.

The model libraries have helped to create an environment that is supportive and conducive to producing quality research, and where young researchers feel connected to their peers on other campuses and with the broader global academic community. 
The new Rhodes facility includes an academic portal, known as PRIMO, which facilitates the identification and location of research materials not only at Rhodes but also through open source and other repositories.