The Library’s future overseas, Asian and Pacific collecting program will seek to build a collection that remains relevant and necessary in an era of unparalleled access to information. There will be a focus on resources that underpin research and contribute to the research process. The Library takes a broad view of what ‘research’ is for its many users. The world of academic research, for example, includes not only single discipline-based research but multidisciplinary research and problem- or issues-based study. Family history research makes up a sizeable proportion of the in-depth use of the Library’s historical collections. There are also Library users who find what they need from the Library’s eresource databases or from free web resources and do not seek in-depth interaction with the collections. Library collecting will take these diverse needs into account.
Creating a collection that remains relevant and necessary to research will require the Library to hold collections with an element of ‘specialness’, not available elsewhere. This collecting direction is most relevant in priority collecting areas where there is existing strength, such as contextual works on Australia’s history and development, or resources relating to the Asia Pacific region. Publications collected will include the documentary and primary source publishing that is already a strong feature of the Library collections.
Within the scope of the Library’s overall geographic and subject collecting priorities, this collecting will include, where available, published sources across all formats such as maps, newspapers, official publications, statistics, reference works, electoral data, contemporary accounts, pictorial works, music, personal narratives, ephemera and websites. These materials are the building blocks of research and will enable the Library to create a collection that remains useful for research in years to come.