Signs of Hope for International Collections and Services Are Our Worries Over? Deborah Jakubs Rita DiGiallonardo Holloway University Librarian & Vice Provost for Library Affairs Duke University “The Future of Foreign Language Collections in Transformational Times: What is at Stake?” CEAL Plenary March 24, 2010
Old Worries • Crisis in foreign acquisitions • Few researchers relative to other areas • Use statistics • Uncertain future supply of area studies library specialists • Rising costs and budgetary competition • Digital “threat” • Traditional area studies questioned
New Worries • Platform compatibility • Faculty interest in new fields and new media • New interdisciplinary collaborations • Diversity of models for digital dissemination • Rising costs of access to electronic information • Impact on print acquisitions of trend toward digital • Uneven availability of full-text databases and discriminatory costs of their creation
Positive Trends, New Dynamics • We are not that different. • Impact of globalization and internationalization. • The original “interdisciplinarians.” • University librarians are paying attention.
Positive Trends, New Dynamics • Collaborative digital initiatives hold promise. • Collections are growing. • Area studies collections are special collections. • Distributed, cooperative collection development is working.
Parting Questions • What evidence do we have that foreign language collections are threatened? What’s missing? • Why has there been so little formal collaboration among East Asian collections and librarians? • Have demand and circulation changed? • Is outsourcing the future? • Where will the next generation of East Asian/area studies librarians come from and what skills must they bring? • What should a university librarian know about foreign language collections in transformational times?