ILN: Getting to know you: My workspace – Alyson Dalby

My 9-5 home

My 9-5 home

This is a photo of my work desk. Of course my work space is bigger than this – it encompasses the whole library – but this is where I do the majority of my work.

I work as a supervisor in the interlibrary loans/document delivery department of a large university library in Sydney, Australia. I’ve only been in the job for 6 weeks, and there are signs of that around my desk. The information on the cubicle wall includes things like our mailing address, the business card of the contact for our ILL software (Relais), a staff roster and a list of all the libraries in Australia that we borrow from, and whether they allow renewals for interlibrary loans. I’ve also got little slips of paper that are helping me learn the departmental vocabulary. They tell me that borrowing=requesting=incoming items, and lending=supplying=outgoing items. Getting my head around how to talk about borrowing books from other libraries versus lending books to other libraries has been an important part of settling in.

Other things on my desk include the ever-present pot and cup of tea, and a small collection of teas from which to choose. I offer these teas to my team, and they think I’m strange. You may also notice Benedict the ILN Badger in the left of the picture. The badger stems from an in-joke that started from a misheard comment about badges, and has now turned into the unofficial ILN mascot. He’s there to remind me that there are people all around the world doing the same work that I’m doing. And that I should email my ILN partner!

Finally there is my red notebook, which I use for all my notes from my role as a director of the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA). Red is a colour used in ALIA’s logo, so it made sense to buy myself a good quality, red notebook to celebrate being elected to the board last year.

Alyson Dalby, ILN Program Coordinator

Posted in Round 3 and tagged .


  1. Hello Alyson! Interesting to see your workspace. It’s a space of a very busy person. Irina (Russian State Library, Moscow)

  2. Pingback: ILN: Getting to Know You – My Workspace – Kate Byrne | International Librarians Network

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