Collection Development for Virtual Libraries
Patricia Pettijohn (The Louis de la Parte Florida Mental Health Institute at the University of South Florida-Tampa, USA) and Tina Neville (University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, USA)
Copyright: © 2003
The evolution from paper to electronic resources transforms the way that information is owned, shared, and accessed. For libraries, the commodification of digital information has long-term implications for the acquisition and development of library collections. As licensing replaces purchasing, and the business practices of software companies replace those of publishers, access to information on demand supersedes collection building, and cooperative acquisitions supplement local collection development. Growing demand for full-text online content that can be easily searched and remotely accessed has led libraries to depend on a host of intermediary agents and cooperatives. Within this landscape of proliferating information and diminishing buying power, it is not surprising that when the Digital Library Federation launched an informal survey of the major challenges confronting research libraries, respondents identified digital collection development as their greatest challenge (Greenstein, 2001). In this chapter, we will look first at how libraries have responded to this paradigmatic shift by pioneering new collection development strategies, and then examine the changing responsibilities of collection development librarians in an electronic environment.