Histories – The 8% Solution: Biodiversity, Imperialism and Nature in Singapore

Published on : 26 Jan 2021

Histories – The 8% Solution: Biodiversity, Imperialism and Nature in Singapore

The imposition of colonial rule transformed not only the political, cultural and social makeup of Singapore but also its biodiversity. The rapid expansion of plantation agriculture resulted in massive deforestation, leading to an environmental crisis as well as a steep decline in the biodiversity found on the island. This talk will focus on how these developments, which began two centuries ago, resulted in approaches to conserve resources on the island and continue to influence our understanding of Singapore’s past, and shape the natural landscape that we enjoy today.

Thurs, 18 Feb 2021

6 pm – 7 pm (SG Time)

Conducted via Zoom

Register via https://go.gov.sg/nl-18feb  

About the Speaker

Timothy P. Barnard is an Associate Professor in the Department of History at the National University of Singapore, where he focuses on the environmental and cultural history of the Straits of Melaka. He is the author of numerous articles and books, including Nature’s Colony (2016) and Imperial Creatures: Humans and Other Animals in Colonial Singapore, 1819-1942 (2019).

This series highlights research on historical and related matters in Singapore and the region, creating an appreciation of the role of humanities and social science research in contemporary society.

Archives Unlocked – Historic Houses of Singapore: Towkays at Home

Published on : 26 Jan 2021

Archives Unlocked – Historic Houses of Singapore: Towkays at Home

Senior archivist Yap Jo Lin will introduce a selection of houses that were once the residences of Chinese businessmen, or towkays, in Singapore. This talk will feature highlights from our building plan collection, and include photographs and oral history interviews from the Archives. Join Jo Lin and find out more about the men (and women!) who lived in these glamorous and now-historic homes.

Tue, 9 Feb 2021

6 pm – 7 pm (SG Time)

Zoom Webinar

Register via https://go.gov.sg/nas-9feb 

About the Speaker
Jo Lin is a senior archivist at the National Archives of Singapore, where she manages the archives’ collection of building plans. She enjoys working with building plans which, to her, are records that represent people’s hopes for the future.

Curious about what goes on in the National Archives of Singapore? Join us for this monthly series of talks, as we unlock stories of our nation through the archives’ collections.

Reading in the Age of Distraction

Published on : 30 Dec 2020

Reading in the Age of Distraction

We seem to read more words per day than ever before. We read our Facebook feeds, binge on news tweets, skim through the web and pore over text messages. Yet, we have lost the ability to truly lose ourselves in the words of writers. Deep and focused reading is a lost art in the digital age. Join us to have a conversation with leading international thinkers to gain tips and insights on reading well in the age of distraction.


Speakers include Nicholas Carr, author of The Shallows: What the Internet is doing to our Brains, Rolf Dobeli, author of The Art of Thinking Clearly, Alan Rusbridger, former Editor-in-Chief of The Guardian and Maryanne Wolf, author of Reader Come Home: The Reading Brain in a Digital World.


Sat, 23 and 30 Jan 2021
10.00 am to 2.00 pm (Singapore Time)
Conducted via Zoom webinar
Register now via https://go.gov.sg/rad


The Little Book Box

Published on : 2 Oct 2020

The Little Book Box


Click here to sign up.

Registration for the second round of book delivery service (Feb-Apr) is now open!

Reading is a special gift we can provide for our children, and now it has become easier to get your hands on books from our librarians’ choice list. For a monthly subscription fee of S$10.70 (inclusive of GST), a box of 8 books, specially curated for children will be delivered to your doorstep.


1. Books delivered to the comfort of your homes for 3 consecutive months

A minimum subscription period of three (3) months is required with an upfront amount of S$32.10 (inclusive of GST). These books will be delivered every month.


2. A mix of books hand-picked by our librarians to help enrich your child’s reading journey

Subscribers will receive a monthly selection of eight (8) English children’s books, including a variety of fiction and non-fiction titles, and those from the Singapore collection. These books span a broad range of children's interests and are catered for two age groups, 4-6 years old and 7-9 years old.


3. An additional 8 books on top of your current loan quota

Books under this service do not fall within the usual loan quota. Therefore, subscribers can still continue to borrow up to 16 books (for basic member) and 24 books (for partner member), while having 8 books delivered to them. Subscribers may monitor the due dates of the books under this service in their library membership account, or refer to the printed receipt that will be inserted into the box with their book.



Terms of Service


1. You must apply to be a subscriber to this delivery service. There are a limited number of available subscriptions so no promise is made that every application will be successful.


2. To apply for this delivery service, you must first be a National Library Board (NLB) library member and must not have any unpaid fees/charges in your membership account. (Note: If the membership you hold is an annual one, there must be at least 6 months remaining to your library membership when your application is received.)


3. Each subscription period is for 3 months.


4. Under the subscription, you agree that a set of 8 books as selected by NLB will be delivered to you each month. You also agree that this service cannot cater for individual preferences so no requests for exchanges can be made.


5. Delivery schedules may differ but you will be able to enjoy reading the books for at least 21 days. The precise loan period and date due for the books will be shown in your library membership account.


6. The books must be returned to any NLB public library via the Bookdrop by the due date. (Note that there will be charges for overdue and lost books. See the rates at https://nlb.gov.sg/VisitUs/Membership.aspx.)


7. You will receive an email from NLB on your application. If you have been successful, you will receive instructions on how to make payment of S$32.10 (including GST) for a 3-month subscription. NLB must receive the payment within 5 days of the date the email is sent, failing which NLB will cancel the application. Note that there can be no cancellation of a subscription and no refunds after payment is made.


8. Please ensure that there are no unpaid fees/charges in your membership account at any time during your subscription period. NLB will stop delivery of books until the fees/charges are paid.


9. The delivery address indicated in the application form will be used to deliver the books to you. NLB will not use this address for any other matters except for delivery under this delivery service. If you need to change this address, you must send the new address at least one month in advance to enquiry@nlb.gov.sg or you shall be responsible to pay for any lost books.


10. NLB has engaged a contractor to deliver the books. You agree that the contractor will need to be given your contact details for the sole purpose of delivery to you.

First-of-its-kind Book Dispenser at Lot One Shoppers’ Mall for patrons residing in Choa Chu Kang

Published on : 14 Jan 2021

First-of-its-kind Book Dispenser at Lot One Shoppers’ Mall for patrons residing in Choa Chu Kang

First-of-its-kind Book Dispenser at Lot One Shoppers’ Mall for patrons residing in Choa Chu Kang



Patrons residing in Choa Chu Kang now have another way to access books and materials they love! In a pilot initiative, we have introduced our first-ever Book Dispenser @ Choa Chu Kang, where patrons can conveniently browse and borrow a selection of curated books, eBooks and materials for all ages. Through its interactive screen, patrons can also pick up their reserved books and other materials at the dispenser - much like the reservation lockers at our libraries. Launched on 17 July 2020, the Book Dispenser will serve patrons residing in Choa Chu Kang area who are affected by the temporary closure of Choa Chu Kang Public Library (CCKPL), and will be available until 2021, when CCKPL will reopen. CCKPL has been closed since 10 June 2019 for renovations, as part of our efforts to better serve the community with enhanced facilities and programmes.


The Book Dispenser is located at level 1 (opposite The Body Shop, #01-14) of Lot One Shoppers’ Mall in Choa Chu Kang, with operating hours that run parallel to those of the mall:

  • Mondays to Sundays: 10.00 a.m. to 10.00 p.m.

    For more details on how to use the Book Dispenser, read on!


  1. Browsing and borrowing curated books and eBooks

    Borrow popular English books on the spot, much like at a physical library

The Book Dispenser contains a selection of physical English language books chosen from NLB’s popular collections. The books available for borrowing span a range of age groups and will be replenished daily, so patrons can access fresh and up-to-date materials. Any item that remains in the dispenser after 15 days will be removed and replaced the next day.

The loan quota, renewal privileges, and loan periods for materials borrowed from the Book Dispenser are the same as those from our other public libraries. Patrons may return their borrowed materials at any public library (excluding CCKPL), including the nearby Bukit Batok Public Library (BBPL) and Bukit Panjang Public Library (BPPL). Bookworms looking to renew their materials may do so with the NLB mobile app, or at any book borrowing station (BBS) or the reservation lockers at the public libraries.

Browse, borrow and download eBooks to read offline

Patrons can use the Book Dispenser’s interactive screen to browse, borrow and download eBooks for offline access using the OverDrive or Libby app.

2.  Collect reserved books and materials

The Book Dispenser also serves as a pick-up location for patrons to collect their reserved books, magazines and audio-visual (AV) materials. The Book Dispenser does not have a payment function and patrons can pay their fee(s) prior to collecting their reserved item(s), via http://www.nlb.gov.sg/myLibrary/account/payonline, through the NLB mobile app, or at any of our public library e-Kiosks or reservation lockers using Cash Card, EZ-Link or NETS.


Check the crowd levels before you visit

Published on : 1 Jul 2020

Check the crowd levels before you visit

As the libraries reopen, please continue to observe safe distancing measures. Do avoid crowds for your own safety.

Check the crowd levels at the libraries and archives in real-time.

As we have limited walk-in capacity, you are encouraged to book your visit in advance.


Thank you for your understanding as we strive to maintain a safe environment for all.

Book your visit online

Published on : 30 Jun 2020

Book your visit online

We have moved the information on this page to a more permanent location. To book your visit with us in advance, please click here: https://www.nlb.gov.sg/Visit/GettingOriented/PlanYourVisit.aspx

You can also:

  1. Go to the menu bar
  2. Click Visit > Getting Oriented > Plan Your Visit 

Remember to check "Plan Your Visit" for updates before you head down to our libraries & archives. 

Digital Business Library

Published on : 23 Oct 2017

Digital Business Library

The Digital Business Library will target the business sector, enabling users to access relevant library content anytime, anywhere, and on any devices. Such a focus is also aligned to Singapore’s emphasis on growing a capable taskforce equipped with 21st century skills. 

Digital Business Library is available via https://nlb.overdrive.com/library/biz