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Collections, selection, access: Where next?

Aline Soules (University Libraries, California State University, East Bay, Hayward, California, USA)

New Library World

ISSN: 0307-4803

Article publication date: 6 May 2014




The purpose of this paper is to review current strategies in collections, selection and the access libraries provide, to present scenarios that illustrate the roles libraries are beginning to play and to discuss viable strategies for libraries in the future.


An extensive review of the literature was conducted to identify current strategies in collections and selection, and to explore innovations in access strategies that reveal future directions.


Librarians are redefining collections and selection, implementing new strategies to provide information that is more relevant to today’s needs, focusing more intently on niche collections and experimenting in access strategies to market information and increase use.

Practical implications

Libraries’ survival depends on re-thinking the philosophy and approach to collections, selection and access.

Social implications

Libraries need this shift in thinking and approach to find their place in the new information world.


The paper provides an overview of current thinking in collections, selection and access, prompts thought about new directions in this area and provides a forum for discussion.



Soules, A. (2014), "Collections, selection, access: Where next?", New Library World, Vol. 115 No. 5/6, pp. 263-271.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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