AS A RESULT of present economic problems in Britain and attendant cuts in spending, there is a need to achieve maximum cost‐effectiveness in all sectors of public spending including libraries. This article examines a simple method by which economies could be made in buying multiple copies of books. It is assumed that unless librarians have freedom to buy a single copy of any book they choose, they will not achieve the breadth and depth required of first‐class libraries, be they in the public sector or in academic institutions. Perhaps second copies need cause little concern, but a pilot survey of a polytechnic library revealed cases where as many as four, six or even eight copies of the same edition had been bought on one occasion before the effectiveness of a lesser purchase could have been evaluated.


Tyson, B., Iwaschkin, R., Mead, G., Reid, D., Gillman, P., Ashworth, W., Bingley, C., Fleming, E., Lawson, S. and Hills, K. (1979), "Comment", New Library World, Vol. 80 No. 8, pp. 145-155. https://doi.org/10.1108/eb038445

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Copyright © 1979, MCB UP Limited

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