Position Statement: Collection redistribution in NSLA libraries

Australia’s national, state and territory libraries have a legislated mandate to collect our documentary heritage. All nine of these libraries are members of NSLA.

Under national legal deposit legislation, NSLA libraries in Australia collect published electronic works through the National edeposit service (NED) and collaborative web archiving infrastructure. These collections are stored and preserved by the National Library of Australia, but collected and managed by all nine member libraries.

Beyond these national digital collections, however, each library’s collecting focus reflects what is most important to its jurisdiction and is articulated in its own collection development policy.

In recognition of these differences, NSLA libraries in Australia have been collaborating since 2012 in the transfer of print materials that are underused or do not fit with collection policies in one library, but will strengthen state-specific or unique collections in another. The benefits of redistributing content in this way include:

  • expanding specialist collections
  • avoiding unnecessary duplication
  • assembling complete runs of journals
  • releasing high-demand storage space, and
  • enhancing opportunities for collecting state or territory heritage material.

The redistribution of low-use print collections is part of a broader set of collaborative actions designed to improve access to our documentary heritage, including interlibrary lending, digitisation of heritage materials, and shared platforms for collection delivery online.

Current contacts

Libraries ACT – Antoinette Buchanan

Library & Archives NT – Lilly Hoi Sze Ho

Libraries Tasmania – Ian Morrison

National Library of Australia – Libby Cass

State Library of New South Wales – Zoe Melling

State Library of Queensland – Robyn Hamilton

State Library of South Australia – Lesley Sharp

State Library of Western Australia – David Hodgson

State Library Victoria – Vicki Nelson


Position statement: Collection redistribution in NSLA libraries