ERIC Number: ED314093
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Selection for Preservation of Research Library Materials.
Commission on Preservation and Access, Washington, DC.
Intended to stimulate further thinking on the part of the community of scholars who must have a voice in selection strategies, this report addresses: (1) the distinction between preservation (saving the content of a brittle book) and conservation (saving the original item); (2) differences in the needs and objectives of preservation across the several fields of scholarship; (3) approaches to selection (the "great collections approach" which assesses the relative strength of the collection by classification, or the use of an existing scholarly bibliography or a highly specialized sub-society for small segments of a field); and (4) factors affecting the choice of the approach (urgency of preservation of the intellectual estate of the nation, the issue of cost, and the willingness of libraries to collaborate). Criteria mentioned for the selection of materials to be preserved include the rarity, uniqueness, and special features of the item, such as illustrations, photographs, and/or typography, and the feasibility and cost effectiveness of available technologies. It is noted that the preservation problem is most pressing in the arts and humanities, and that the choices of what to preserve or conserve are the most difficult in these areas. It is concluded that, although the future characteristics of a national preservation program are unclear, it is clear that scholars and librarians must become more involved in the process; it must be explained to a generally sympathetic public and legislature; and ways of doing the job better must be developed. (SD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Commission on Preservation and Access, Washington, DC.