Funded Project: Kuei Chiu

“Collection Development Practice and Policies inChinese Academic and Research Libraries”(Abstract)In spite of many changes in Chinese academic libraries, they are almost unknown to the outside world and not much study has been done in this field. It is the purpose of this project to fill this gap partially by studying the current status of collection development in Chinese academic libraries and to compare them with their U.S. counterparts.

The results of searching various library science resources, including the “Library Literature” CD-ROM, proved that almost no similar research has been done on the topic. The only available book on the topic is that of Priscilla C. Yu entitled “Chinese academic and research libraries: acquisitions, collections, and organization” (Greenwich : JAI, 1996). The book, however, gives more of a historical review of Chinese academic and research libraries as an institution rather than what its title implies. Therefore, an additional purpose of my project is to close this gap in library research by investigating the issues of selection, acquisition procedure, allocation of library materials, collection evaluation, and library services.

Four university libraries have been selected for this research: Fudan University, Jiao Tong University, Shanghai International Studies University and Nanjing University. These universities were selected because of their geographic proximity, their status as the key universities in China as well as their membership in Project 211, a program initiated by the State Development & Planning Commission of China with the mission to modernize the Chinese higher education system.

Like most U.S. counterparts, the biggest challenge in collection development for Chinese academic libraries is the constrained budget. However, the situation in China is much worse, even though the Chinese academic libraries receive a larger percentage of the university total expenditures for library acquisitions. While conducting a field study, I will look at the budget, its allocation, and ways in which the Chinese academic libraries cope with the situation.

I expect to publish the results of this research in one of the following library journals: Journal of East Asian Libraries, College & Research Libraries or Chinese Librarianship.