2019-20 Snapshot

Two maps of Australia showing distribution of visitor reach and research and information enquiry reach. 85% of visitors come from major cities, with 11.8% from inner regional areas, 1.9% from outer regional and remote areas and 0.9% undeclared.

Various statistics about the Library, its staff, collections, visitors and buildings. Statistics are listed in text below.

Download 2019-20 snapshot (PDF, 116KB)

Our People

  • 346 staff (average full-time equivalent)
  • Median age of staff is 48 years
  • 77.1%% of ongoing staff have worked at the Library for over 5 years
  • 69 registered volunteers
  • Approximately 1,809 Friends of the National Library

Our Collections


  • Total 279 shelf kilometres housing the collections
  • Approximately 10.25 million collection items
  • 375, 308 new collection items


  • Total 2.4 petabytes of digital material
  • 25,425 new items acquired in digital format (This figure does not include individual issues of magazines and journals acquired due to the implementation of National edeposit and the resulting data migration)

Access and Usage

  • 33.73 million visits to the National Library online
  • 82,648 physical items delivered to users either in reading rooms or offsite via interlibrary loan or document supply
  • 30,879 reference and information inquiries answered by Library staff
  • 28.3 million visits to Trove
  • 6.49 billion Australian and online resources available
  • 25.63 million newspaper pages freely available online
  • 361.06 million lines of text corrected

Social Media

Note: Social media reporting relies on a third-party algorithm tool, which may be adjusted from year to year.

  • Facebook: 212,286 engagements
  • Twitter: 44,376 engagements
  • Instagram: 32,412 engagements
  • Blog: 73 blog posts


We operated from five buildings:

  • the main Library building
  • three offsite collection storage repositories
  • an office in the Australian Embassy in Jakarta

We operated three reading rooms and two galleries in the main building:

  • Main Reading Room (including Newspapers and Family History Area)
  • Special Collections Reading Room (including the Petherick Reading Room)
  • Asian Collections Reading Room
  • Treasures Gallery
  • Exhibition Gallery


  • 368,175 onsite visitors
  • 1.23 million offsite visitors

Our staff delivered onsite and offsite programs including:

  • 119 public events
  • 423 volunteer-led tours
  • 139 organised school programs
  • 11 learning programs
  • 47 online events

There were:

  • 183,800 reading room visitors
  • 91,902 visitors to our exhibition galleries
  • 10,532 visitors to events
  • 340,486 online event attendees
  • 5,730 school students