March 22, 2018

Research Article (Preprint): “Collections as a Service: A Research Library’s Perspective”

The following article (an accepted for publication preprint) is scheduled for final publication in the Jan. 2018 issue of C&RL (College & Research Libraries).


Collections as a Service: A Research Library’s Perspective


Julie Linden
Yale University Library

Sarah Tudesco
Yale University Library

Daniel Dollar
Yale University Library


C&RL Website


ACRL’s “2016 Top Trends in Academic Libraries” noted a “shift to the incorporation and integration of more continuous, ongoing, flexible, and sustainable review of collections,” and “an increasing need” to align collection development with “institutional research and curricular requirements.”

This article describes these trends playing out at a top-ranked research library. Given the library’s long history of collecting print books, the article examines the monographic acquisitions program from multiple angles, including circulation, expenditures, approval plans, and e-book usage. There are also suggestions for additional metrics to evaluate collections as a service, and questions posed to frame an ongoing research and assessment agenda.

The models described in this case study and the proposed research and assessment agenda can be adapted by other academic libraries, both to fit local institutional needs and as collection development and “collections as a service” are increasingly realized within interinstitutional collaborative networks.

Direct to Full Text Article (27 pages; PDF)

Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.