NACIS 2016 Presentation
Philip White, University of Colorado at Boulder
Elise Gowen, University of Colorado Boulder Libraries
Acquisition of data from external sources is often overlooked in academic libraries' collection development policies. Library policies' inclusion of data acquisition guidelines range from well-defined to nonexistent. Recognizing a need for a coordinated approach, librarians at the University of Colorado Boulder sought to formalize data acquisition guidelines to avoid acquiring data of limited usefulness and to improve cohesion of interdepartmental data policies. We systematically reviewed literature and collection policy documents from more than 20 peer institutions to identify common approaches and explore data collection assessment strategies. We will discuss best practices for implementing a data acquisition process. Due to the dynamic nature of GIS data, we will also examine the unique policy needs of geospatial data users. This presentation discusses our findings and explores broader applications for library-wide collection development.
Developing a data acquisition policy at
the University of Colorado Boulder
Earth Sciences & Environment Librarian, CU Boulder
Earth Science Librarian, Penn State
CU Boulder Earth Sciences & Map Library
What is a Collection Development Policy?
Why is this necessary?
1. Determine the current state of collection policies as
they pertain to geospatial data & digital
2. Identify best practices that can be incorporated
into my policy.
Identified peer institutions based on AAU and ARL
Located (or attempted to locate) each library’s
collection policy documents (n=59; 51 of these
were at libraries that provide GIS support)
Reviewed each policy following a set criteria based
on Florance 2006 plus updates.
Results: Data Policy or Not?
Criteria Yes No
Hmm… not bad.
Results: Data Details
Criteria Yes No
Data Format: 18 33
Purchase request form with clear criteria for qualifying data sets
Plan for distributing and storing the data long-term
Consortial or collective options should be prioritized for general
Usage and utility must be considered
Continue developing policy jointly with other data-heavy disciplines
For CU, expand collection and put distribution method into place
What is the state of the field?
Most likely, policies do not reflect actions --but this is a problem.
Earth Sciences & Map Library
University of Colorado Boulder
Florance, P. (2006). GIS Collection Development within an Academic
Library. Library Trends, 55(2), 222–235.