Information Services

Space occupancy monitoring

Space occupancy monitoring is currently operating on the Main Library Lower Ground Floor.

Live feed 

You can view the live data indicating the number of study desks currently available for use in the Main Library, Lower Ground Floor on the Study Desk Availability webpage.

Why do we need to monitor usage?

Despite increasing the number of study spaces in the Main Library by 358 in 2016, to over 2,300, the pressure on study spaces remains.  This encourages the user behaviour of reserving spaces by leaving possessions at a vacant study desk which the Library and EUSA are keen to deter. Utilising the space effectively is very important and means more students get to study in their preferred environment. 

Communicating to users where to go within the 7 floors of the building to find vacant study space is highly desirable.  Space occupancy monitoring giving real time information may prove beneficial in this respect, in addition to our existing indicators of PC availability based on PC logins.

The Lower Ground Floor is one of the floors which remains open and occupied as part of 24/7 Main Library opening. Monitoring study space usage will inform management decisions, for example whether additional floors need to be opened to meet user demand for study space and also when making strategic plans for the longer term future of the Main Library, possibly requiring very substantial investment by the University.

How are we monitoring usage?

We are monitoring usage of all reader spaces on the Lower Ground Floor and Group Study Room LG.03. All data collected, analysed and displayed is anonymous. Information notices are in place to advise users.

OccupEye technology supplied by Cad-Capture Data Services Limited

We have attached a small OccupEye sensor to each desk in the Lower Ground Floor to measure temperature and movement, and sensors on the desks and entrance door in LG.03. The sensors communicate with receivers, also installed on the Lower Ground Floor, over the wireless network.  The receivers communicate with the proprietary data logging software via wired Ethernet.  The logged data is sent to a remote host and ISG staff access a dashboard analytics for data reporting.  This technology is widely used in the commercial sector and is in use in a small number of other University libraries, such as Birkbeck College.

Is personal data being collected?

No.  The system involves deployment of non-personal data capturing sensors only.  No personal data will be captured. We have engaged Records Management regarding Data Protection and Privacy and have carried out a Privacy Impact Assessment.

Is the equipment related to fire safety or emergency evaculation?

No. The equipment deployed is nothing to do with fire safety or emergency evacuation.


If you have any queries, concerns or other feedback regarding this space occupancy monitoring please contact the IS Helpline: