EBSM has been pioneered by librarian, George Kerr, since the mid 1990’s. George first identified the need for a new approach to managing collections when the library in which he worked, West Lothian Council, was promoting more performance based, more measurable, more customer focused and less wasteful collection management.

Combined with his own dissatisfaction with having to purchase new items and plan collection movement with totally inadequate data, George set about designing a framework for collection improvement that was based around customer consultation.

With limited scope for large scale first hand consultation, proxy consultation based on the evidence from data held within West Lothian’s own Library Management System (LMS) emerged as the perfect contender as the central consultation information source.

A comprehensive toolset was then developed, and was further refined following George’s work for the Bertelsmann Foundation’s International Network of Public Libraries in 1998.

George has continued to promote EBSM at a number of UK and international seminars, and today EBSM is recognized as a proven, highly practical methodology for improving library collection performance.