Collective Wisdom Question: Funding Unique Information Resources – A Library or Department Expense?

Greetings all!

I’d greatly appreciate feedback on a sticky issue, and it would be wonderful if the responses came from individuals working in a variety of academic libraries serving fashion students.   (Fashion schools, colleges, universities,  public, private, etc.)

Libraries subscribe to a variety of online databases that suit the information resource needs of students in the institution as a whole (ex: Academic Search Premier for all students) as well as students in specific programs (Mergent Online for business students.)  When a single, unique class wants or needs a very specific information resource (say, for example, an annual summary report for a very focused field, or a database that serves only one class in the entire school), what entity is typically expected to bear the expense?  The library, or the department in which the class is based?

I’d greatly appreciate any response you can provide.  You may respond here or directly to my e-mail:

Thank you!





Author: Sandra Ley

Sandra Ley is the visual arts and fashion design librarian for Pima Community College in Tucson, Arizona.

2 thoughts on “Collective Wisdom Question: Funding Unique Information Resources – A Library or Department Expense?”

  1. Our department don’t usually have budgets for such things. We have sometimes been able to negotiate a license that takes into account that only 100 of our 20,000 students would have any use for this thing. Other times students are each required to take a semester’s worth of personal subscription to something like WWD, and that is considered a textbook. And sometimes we just buy it and try to figure out who else could use it, promote it to them and see if use = value over time. If it’s a one-time purchase (expensive ref book, for ex) I will sometimes go to the whole faculty and ask their advice. “This is 20% of the year’s book budget; do you agree with using your funds this way this year?”

    Hope this helps,

    Sherri B. Saines
    Reference and Instruction Librarian
    Alden Library, Ohio University
    Athens, OH 45701

    Subject Librarian for: Sociology, Fashion, Tourism, & WGSS

    Make a research appointment here:
    follow me@Bibliosanity

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s