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Creating value for all: joint academic library in the service of five universities

Katri Maria Rintamäki (Tritonia Academic Library, University of Vaasa, Vaasa, Finland)
Christina Flemming (Tritonia Academic Library, Åbo Akademi University, Vaasa, Finland)
Anne Marketta Lehto (Tritonia Academic Library, University of Vaasa, Vaasa, Finland)
Jonna Toukonen (Tritonia Academic Library, University of Vaasa, Vaasa, Finland)

Library Management

ISSN: 0143-5124

Article publication date: 6 August 2018

Issue publication date: 25 October 2018




The purpose of this paper is to describe and analyse practices of a joint university library as a model of cooperation between universities.


The paper is a descriptive case study on the benefits and challenges of collaboration based on experiences of one joint library.


In 2000–2010s, Finnish universities and universities of applied sciences have undergone structural changes becoming public corporations. The ideal of the government policy is an effective, productive, entrepreneurial university with lean infrastructure and support services. One solution in pursuing cost-effectiveness and efficiency are joint regional libraries. In Vaasa, the five university units share a joint academic library, Tritonia. Tritonia offers library and information services that consist of print and digital information resources, researchers’ support services, pedagogical and technical support for digital education, and learning commons for its five universities.


The paper describes service production and its development and presents an existing model for cooperation in joint libraries of several academic institutions that are becoming more common.



A version of this paper was originally presented at the QQML 2017 International Conference in Limerick, Ireland, May 23–26, 2017. The authors wish to thank Ann-Sofie Källund for proofreading and translation.


Rintamäki, K.M., Flemming, C., Lehto, A.M. and Toukonen, J. (2018), "Creating value for all: joint academic library in the service of five universities", Library Management, Vol. 39 No. 8/9, pp. 605-614.



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