National State and Territory Libraries

About National State and Territory Libraries

The nation’s nine collecting institutions are the National Library of Australia, the State Libraries of New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia, the ACT Heritage Library and the Northern Territory Library. The primary role of these libraries is to collect, preserve and provide access to the documentary history of Australia, including books, manuscripts, documents, images, maps and other materials, in print, digital and other formats. The collective body representing these institutions is National and State Libraries Australasia (NSLA).

The state and territory libraries play a leadership role in supporting public libraries within their jurisdiction, and there is a close bond with archives, museums, galleries, university and special libraries, which also hold unique collections.


NSLA libraries contribute to at least 10 of the 17?UN Sustainable Development Goals, including 1 No poverty; 3 Good health and well-being; 4 Quality education; 5 Gender equality; 8 Decent work and economic growth; 9 Industry, innovation and infrastructure; 10 Reduced inequalities; 11 Sustainable cities and communities; 16 Peace and justice, strong institutions, and 17 Partnerships for the goals.


Figures from NSLA show that during the 2016-2017 financial year:

11.5 million people visited library buildings
68.9 million visits were made to websites, including Trove
12.9 million visits were made to library catalogues
6885 terabytes of digital collections were stored
$33.5 million was the total spend on collections
$5.3 billion was the asset value of collections
$9.7 million was the asset value of buildings/sites.

ALIA Futures has more information about collecting institutions.