Prof Peter Reid
Title: Professor
First Name: Peter H
Surname: Reid
Position: Professor
Telephone: +44 (0)1224 263927

Duties and Responsibilities

Peter Reid is a Professor of Librarianship and his work covers a wide range of cultural and cultural heritage related topics.  He teaches Library Management, Cultural Heritage, Cultural Tourism and Media History.  He has taught at Robert Gordon University since 1998. 

Areas of Expertise

  • Cultural Heritage
  • North-East Scotland (culture, history and language)
  • Libraries & librarianship
  • Library history
  • Local, family and community

Research Interests

Peter’s research interests cross a wide range of cultural and cultural heritage fields.  He is particularly interested in culture and heritage in the North-East of Scotland.  In particular, his work often examines the work of community-based heritage groups, the potential for local heritage of social media, user engagement and story-telling.  Additionally, he is interested in how heritage can be used as vehicle for economic growth or sustainable regeneration in communities.  In this latter aspect, he was involved in the Heritage Lottery Fund project Castle to Cathedral to Cashmere in Elgin. 

  • His own PhD examined the development of a national heritage strategy for country house libraries and he maintains a strong active interest in historical bibliography and the history of libraries (being, inter alia, the editor of the journal Library and Information History). 
  • The management and quality of public libraries in particular and cultural services in general are also areas of interest.  He developed the quality standards used by Scottish public libraries How good is our public library service? alongside Caroline Whitehead and continues to convene Peer-Assessor Panels for this.
  • Local studies collection in public libraries which he has described as “our other national library” and how digital developments can enhance their work.  This also includes work into the scope, purpose, uniqueness and contribution to local, regional and national identity and collective or cultural memory of local collections. 

In 2018, he led the Little Norway project which told the story of the Norwegian and Danish refugees who came to Scotland during the Second World War and which was awarded a European Year of Cultural Heritage Artist Residency. 

In the same year, he also had a grant from Scottish Library and Information Council for the creation of the Doric Literature Portal which has put online many of the hitherto neglected jewels of Doric writing.  

Research Supervision

Peter is currently principal supervisor for a number of doctoral research students, including one in collaboration with the National Gallery in London as part of the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s Collaborative Doctoral Studentship programme.  Additionally, his current supervisions include: Online co-creation and cultural identity in the branding of Scotch whisky, and Artisan provenance and cultural identity in north-east Scotland. 

Peter has supervised several doctorates to completion, including, The Dublin Library Society: associational activity and cultural patriotism in late eighteenth century Dublin,  library education in Iraq, the use of the internet by family historians, the purpose and scope of local studies in UK academic libraries (funded by the AHRC) and the PhD of Professor Sarah Pedersen entitled 'Within their sphere': women correspondents to the Aberdeen Free Press and Daily Journal 1900-1918'

External / Professional Roles

Research and Professional Practice

2018-               Principal Investigator and Project Manager ‘Little Norway: Nordic refugees in Scotland during the Second World War’.  European Year of Cultural Heritage.

2018-               Principal Investigator and Project Manager: Gweed Wirds: Doric Literature Portal (Funded by Scottish Library and Information Council Innovation and Development Fund, £22,327)

2018-               Collaborate Doctoral Programme studentship with National Gallery, London (Funded by ARHC CDP £70,717);

2018-               Member, The Doric Board;

2017-               External Examiner (annual review of Doctoral Students) Department of Information Science, University of Glasgow;

2016-               Patron, (South Range Appeal) heritage advisor (and member of Development Steering Group), Pluscarden Abbey, Moray;

2016                Principal Investigator and Project Leader: evaluative review of ‘Every child a library member’ project (on behalf of Scottish Library and Information Council and Scottish Government, £7,053);

2016-               Editor, Library and Information History and member of Library and Information History Committee (CILIPS);

2015                Chair How good is our public library service Review Panels

2015                Member, Board of Trustees, Scottish Library and Information Council

2015-18           Director, i3 Conference

2014-15           Leader, Review of Public Library Improvement Fund (Scottish Library and Information Council / Scottish Government)

2014                Strategic Priority Leader for Northern Culture and Design (Robert Gordon University)

2013                Member, Editorial Advisory Board, Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland

2013-14           Leader, Review of Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix (Scottish Library and Information Council / Scottish Government).

2013                Past President, Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland and Chair of Board of Trustees (Policy and Resources Committee)

2012-16           Expert Advisor, Castle to Cathedral to Cashmere (Elgin Town Centre Regeneration Project)

2012                President, Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland

2012-15           External Examiner, (Library and Information Management) School of Computing, Engineering and Information Science, University of Northumbria

2011-14            Member, Sub Panel 36 (Communication, Cultural and Media Studies, Library and Information Management) of 2014 Research Excellence Framework

2011                 External Reviewer (Information Management) Liverpool John Moores University

2011-14            Member, iDocQ, Scottish Information Science Doctoral Colloquium

2011-12            Vice President, Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland; Chair of Policy and Resources Committee

2011-14            Charity Trustee, Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals

2010-14           External Examiner, (Information and Library Studies) Department of Computer and Information Science, University of Strathclyde

2010-               Member, Cross University Executive, Information Science Pathway, Scottish Doctorial Training Centre, Economic and Social Research Council

2010-               Member, Peer Review College, Arts and Humanities Research Council

2010                External Reviewer (Communication and Information) Liverpool John Moores University

2009-12          Member, Board of Contributors, History of Libraries in Scotland, Scottish Centre for the Book, Edinburgh Napier University

2009-              Member, Editorial Board, Library Review

2007-18          Member, Local Organising Committee and Refereeing Panel for i3 conference

2003-13           Member, Executive Committee, Grampian Information


REID, Peter H.  How good is our public library service? The evolution of a new quality standards framework for Scottish public libraries 2012–2017.  Journal of Librarianship and Information Science.  Online First 3 July 2019. 

COUSINS, F., REID, P. and TAIT, E. (2019).  Bridging the divide: reflections on university-industry collaboration for the development of the graduate certificate in Petroleum Data Management.  Journal of Documentation, e-Print ahead of hardcopy   

REID, Peter H. (2019) Patriots and Rogues: Some Scottish Lairds and Their Libraries, Library & Information History, 35:1, 1-20. 

HOOD, C. and REID, P.H. (2018). Social media as a vehicle for user engagement with local history: a case study in the north-east of Scotland. Journal of Documentation, 74 (4), pp.741-762.

WEBB, S. and REID, P.H.  Sir Francis Leicester’s ‘good library’ at Nether Tabley.  Library and Information History, 34(1), pp.1-22

TAIT, E.J., REID, P.H., LAING, R. and LEON, M. (2018).  Swords, fire and lepers: engaging communities with heritage-led regeneration.  International Journal of Heritage Studies, (In press).

REID, P.H. and TAIT, E.  (2017). Castle to cathedral to cashmere: an evaluative review. Elgin: Moray Council / Heritage Lottery Fund 

LAING, R., TAIT, E., ISAACS, J., LEON, M. and REID, P. 2016. The application of 3D visualisation and HD surveying to help stimulate economic growth in historic urban areas. In Proceedings of the RICS construction, building and real estate research conference (COBRA 2016), 20-22 September 2016, Toronto, Canada. London: RICS [online]. Available from: 

TAIT, E., MARTZOUKOU, K. and REID, P. (2016). Libraries for the future: the role of IT utilities in the transformation of academic libraries. Palgrave communications, 2, article 16070.

REID, P. and COOPER, K. (2016). Information: interactions and impact (i3) conference 2016. Journal of Information Science, 42(3), pages 291-293. 

BAXTER, G., COOPER, K., GRAY, D., REID, P., VERGUNST, J. and WILLIAMS, D., (2015). The use of photo elicitation to explore the role of the main street in Kirkwall in sustaining cultural identity, community, and a sense of place. Aberdeen Business School Working Paper Series, 8 (1). 

REID, P.H. and HOOD, C.M. (2016).  Every child a library member: an evaluative review.  Glasgow: Scottish Library and Information Council (on behalf of Scottish Government) and Aberdeen: Robert Gordon University. 

REID, P.H. and WHITEHEAD, C.  (2014-17). How good is our public library service?  Glasgow: Scottish Library and Information Council. [Framework devised by P.H. Reid and C. Whitehead. 

AITCHISON, B. and REID, P.  The owner of one of the largest and most valuable private libraries in Scotland’: David Hay Fleming as Book Collector.  Library and Information History.  31(2), May 2015, pp95-116. 

REID, Peter H. and MOLLOY, Margaret.  Church and State: politics, religion and censorship in the library service of Co. Mayo.  Library and Information History, June 2013.  

REID, Peter H.  “It is ridiculous that the Borough Librarian of Croydon should decide the policy of the Scottish Education Department”: the establishment of the second library school in Scotland.  Library and Information History, 28(4), December 2012, pp257-271.

GIBB, Forbes and REID, Peter H.  The evolution of professional education [in librarianship] in Scotland.  Scottish Centre for the Book / Edinburgh History of Libraries in Scotland Research Seminar, Glasgow, 5 February 2010. 

REID, Peter H.  and CAIRNS, Audrey M.  The historical development of the library of St Mary’s College, Blairs, Aberdeen, 1829 to 1986.  Library and Information History, 25(4), December 2009, pp.247-264. 

REID, Peter H.   Adventures in local history.  Keynote at North Ayrshire Homecoming 2009.  Irvine, 15 September 2009. 

SKED, Katrina and REID, Peter H.  The people behind the philanthropy: an investigation into the lives and motivations of library philanthropists in Scotland between 1800 and 1914.  Library History, 24(1), March 2008, pp.49-64. 

ROBINSON, Catherine and REID, Peter. Do academic enquiry services scare students. Reference Services Review, 35(3), 2007, pp.405-425. 

REID, Peter H. and MACAFEE, Caroline.  The philosophy of local studies in the interactive age.  Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 39(3) Sept 2007, pp.126-142. 

REID, Peter H.  Local Studies Collection Management module at Robert Gordon University.  LocScot, 4(7), Spring 2006, pp.11-12. 

REID, Peter H.  Ten do’s and don’ts of local studies on the internet.  Locscot, 4(6), Autumn 2005, pp. 20-22. 

REID, Peter H.  Information is the currency of democracy.  Keynote address at Scottish Confederation of University and Research Libraries / National Library of Scotland 5th Annual E-Books Conference, National Library of Scotland, Edinburgh, 14th October 2005. 

REID, Peter H.  The evergreen tree of diabolic knowledge: local studies and the internet.  Paper delivered at CILIP Scotland Conference, Peebles Hydro, 25th May 2005.

REID, Peter H.  Local studies continuing professional development.  Locscot, 4(5), Spring 2005, pp.10-12.

NOLAN, Marie E. and REID, Peter H.  Pride and Glory: Aberdeen Public Library during the Second World War. Library History, 21(1), March 2005, pp.9-28.

JOHNSON, I.M., NEWTON, R., and REID, P.H.  Management and development of e-reference services: some implications for education and training of library staff.  in: City development and library services – proceedings of the second Shanghai International Library Forum, October 12-15 2004, Shanghai, China.  2004.  Shanghai, China: Shanghai Scientific and Technological Literature.  pp. 166-174.

NEWTON, Robert, JOHNSON, Ian and REID, Peter.  Pedagogical issues relating to developing and supporting e-reference services.  LTSN-ICS 5th Annual Conference, Belfast, 31 August – 2nd September 2004.

JOHNSON, Ian, REID, Peter and NEWTON, Robert. E-reference library services for distance learners. Paris: UNESCO, 2004

REID, Peter H.  The digital age and local studies.  Oxford: Chandos, 2003.

REID, Peter H.  Proto-bibliophiles amongst the English Aristocracy, 1500-1700.  Library History, 18 (3), March 2002, pp25-38.

JOHNSON, Ian, REID, Peter and BAXTER, Graeme. Andrew Carnegie: a model for PFI?  Library Association Record, 104 (3), March 2002, pp.175-176.

REID, Peter H.  Carnegie Libraries: a global finding list.  Glasgow: IFLA, 2002.

REID, Peter H. The decline and fall of the British country house library, 1850-2000.  Libraries and Culture, 36(2) Spring 2001, pp.345-366.

REID, Peter H.  ‘The Finest Private Library in Europe’: a brief history of the Spencer of Althorp.  Library History, 14(1), May 1998, pp.65-72.