As an academic library, we support scholars in their research.  However, we also lead research on our own collections, which is crucial to our stewardship of the collections and to the intellectual development of subject knowledge.

Research is fostered through curatorial work, enquiries, projects and grants undertaken with other institutions and universities worldwide. It is communicated to the wider public through temporary and permanent exhibitions, lectures and conferences, as well as through workshops and social media. Research is essential to the dynamic reappraisal of our collections and knowledge about art, society and the world around us. The research we do has national and international relevance. Research is led across a broad range of subject areas and collections disciplines.


Research at the Bodleian

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Conservation research

The Conservation and Collections Care team in the Bodleian Libraries, comprising over 19 conservation experts, lead research on their work and the collections.

Discover more about Bodleian's conservation research


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Heritage Science

Heritage Science aims to improve the preservation, understanding or treatment of cultural heritage. This can include: reviewing conservation literature, scientific analysis, artificial aging experiments, and real-time condition monitoring.

Work at the Bodleian Libraries focuses on three main areas: the development and exploitation of scientific research and visualisation techniques; applying for and participating in large-scale funded research projects; and increasing the Bodleian Libraries’ profile in the arena of international conservation research.

More information about Heritage Science


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Public engagement with research

Public engagement with research describes the many ways that members of the public can be involved in the design, conduct and dissemination of research. High-quality engagement is a two-way process with the goal of generating mutual benefit between the public and researchers and ultimately enhancing the quality or impact of research. Find out more about public engagement with research at the University of Oxford.

As a member of the University’s Gardens, Libraries and Museums (GLAM), the Bodleian Libraries are well placed to work with researchers, both from within Oxford and beyond, to engage audiences with their research and achieve impact through exhibitions, events and more.  Previous public engagement initiatives have ranged from the exhibition Volcanoes to an Ethiopian and Eritrean Study day

For more information contact Maddy Slaven, Head of Public Engagement:  


Research Opportunities

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