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University Libraries

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University Libraries

Collection Development Philosophy

The University of Denver Libraries (DU Libraries) identifies, acquires, manages, and provides access to physical and digital resources in support of the university's mission to advance scholarly inquiry, cultivate critical and creative thought, and generate knowledge. As such, our Collection Development Committee and Collections and Content Management department work to coordinate the selection of an extensive range of scholarly materials in multiple formats. Primary responsibility for purchasing and overseeing collections resides with Subject Librarians in partnership with the Collections and Content Management Librarian.

In selecting materials for addition to our collections, we take seriously the life of the mind; the human capacity for creativity; the myriad ways in which one learns and knows; and the representation of voices that have previously gone unheard. Commitments to social justice and an ethic of care, collection diversification, equity of access to information, accessibility of resources, and the ALA core values of librarianship inform our collection development practice. Our collection-building decisions are also informed by Subject Librarians’ liaison work with DU faculty, researchers, and students. After all, it's through collaboration with the DU community that we're able to understand what our community needs from its library.

True to many libraries' circumstances, our ability to build collections is affected by funding, space, and availability of materials. While we work to acquire outstanding physical and digital resources through considerate stewardship of funds, we also make use of our consortial partnerships to strengthen our collections. In addition to the 4.5 million+ volumes to which we currently provide access, the Libraries maintains cooperative agreements for shared purchasing and preservation through memberships in consortia such as the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries, the Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA), and the Western Regional Storage Trust (WEST).

As one of the leading libraries in the Rocky Mountain West, DU Libraries strives to build comprehensive collections of primary sources that represent interdisciplinary study and ongoing research interests among the DU community. We also advocate for Open Access (OA) publishing, as well as the creation and use of Open Educational Resources (OERs).

University of Denver Libraries’ New Faculty Library Fund

All new tenure-track, non-tenure track, and contingent faculty are eligible for $1,000 in one-time purchases of physical or digital information resources in support of research and teaching for up to two years following their start date at the University of Denver. Made possible through an annual gift from the University Library Association (ULA), the New Faculty Library Fund (NFLF) is available for one-time purchases and does not apply to journal or database subscriptions.

Examples of materials eligible for purchase through the NFLF include books, e-books, DVDs, streaming video, maps, images, data sets, and archival and manuscript materials. The Libraries anticipates that NFLF materials will complement the collection and be accessible to all library users.

In collaboration with Subject Librarians and the Curator of Special Collections & Archives, the Collections & Content Management Librarian makes the final determination on NFLF purchases. As always, if there are materials you’d like the Libraries to acquire, whether you’re a new faculty member or a longer-term faculty member, please talk with your library liaison.

If you have additional questions about the NFLF or would like to proceed with using your funds, contact your library liaison and Shannon Tharp, Collections & Content Management Librarian.

Vendor Communication Guidelines

The University of Denver (DU) Libraries is committed to maintaining healthy, mutually beneficial working relationships with vendors who collaborate with us to provide resources to the DU community. With that in mind, we invite you to become familiar with DU Libraries’ Collection Development Philosophy, Accessibility and the Libraries, and Your Privacy and University Libraries. We also encourage you to review the MIT Framework for Publisher Contracts, which DU Libraries endorses independently and via consortial membership in the Greater Western Library Alliance. It’s our hope that in this process you’ll understand what we aspire to and what we’re working toward.

Here are some guidelines to keep in mind when working with us:

  • Plan purposeful conversations that address the needs of both parties.
  • Extend thoughtfulness and consideration to everyone who participates in an in-person meeting, and to the presentation of resources that contain culturally sensitive archival material.
  • Make use of primary vendor contacts available to you in the Libraries for sales and related issues, rather than contacting faculty outside the Libraries to initiate purchasing or subscription discussions. We understand that publishers communicate with faculty on editorial, publishing, and consultative issues, and we anticipate that you’ll continue to do so.
  • Respect our purchasing timelines and decisions. We indicate early in negotiations that we have a timeline for making purchasing decisions, and those decisions are informed by a given year’s budget constraints and our license review process. Once we decide whether we’d like to move forward with acquiring a resource, we expect that you’ll honor that decision.
  • Provide a realistic timeline for notice of pricing increases, interoperability changes, content updates, and deadlines for invoicing.
  • Trust that we’re well-versed in our knowledge of the DU community’s interests and needs, and allow that knowledge to inform the constructive work we do together.

Additional DU Libraries Collection Development Statements and Policies