Rethinking Collection Development and Management
by Becky Albitz, Christine Avery, and Diane Zabel, Editors
February 2014, 394pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-61069-305-9
$65, £50, 57€, A90
eBook Available: 978-1-61069-306-6
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From selection to acquisition, access to preservation, this book covers the decision-making lifecycle of collections.

This collection of thought-provoking essays by visionary and innovative library practitioners covers theory, research, and best practices in collection development, examining how it has evolved, identifying how some librarians are creatively responding to these changes, and predicting what is coming next.

Rethinking Collection Development and Management adds a new and important perspective to the literature on collection development and management for 21st-century library professionals. The work reveals how dramatically collection development is changing, and has already changed; supplies practical suggestions on how librarians might respond to these advancements; and reflects on what librarians can expect in the future. This volume is a perfect complement for textbooks that take a more traditional approach, offering a broad, forward-thinking perspective that will benefit students in graduate LIS programs and guide practitioners, collection development officers, and directors in public and academic libraries. A chapter on collection development and management in the MLIS curriculum makes this volume especially pertinent to library and information science educators.


  • Provides an up-to-date professional guide that complements traditional collection management texts
  • Identifies current trends and paradigm shifts in collection development and management
  • Illustrates best practices for emerging trends in collection development
  • Features contributions from innovative, informed, and visionary experts in the field
Becky Albitz, MLS, EdD, is director of the James A. Cannavino Library at Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY. Previously, she was media services librarian at the University of Iowa and NYU, head librarian at Penn State Shenango, and most recently electronic resources librarian at Penn State University. Her published works include Licensing and Managing Electronic Resources and a number of articles on media librarianship and licensing. Albitz holds a master's degree in film from Penn State, a masters in library science from the University of Pittsburgh, and a doctorate in higher education from Penn State.

Christine Avery is the Director of Commonwealth Campus Libraries within the University Libraries at Penn State University and for several years was also Collection Development Coordinator for Commonwealth Campus Libraries. Avery joined the University Libraries at Penn State in 1990 and was previously Head of Reference and User Services at the University of Wyoming. In her work at Penn State she manages 20 campus libraries located across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Avery was an ARL Visiting Program Officer from 2010-2012 assigned to the Task Force on 21st Century Research Library Collections, which produced the issue brief "Calibration of Investment and Collaborative Action." She is an active member of Educause. She received her MLS from the University of Texas, a MS in Applied Social Research from Texas Christian University, and BS in Sociology from Texas A&M University.

Diane Zabel holds an endowed position (the Louis and Virginia Benzak Business Librarian) and the rank of Librarian in the Penn State University Libraries. She is an active member of the American Library Association (ALA). Zabel served as elected president of the Reference and User Services Association, one of the divisions of ALA, for the period 2005-2006. She was elected to the ALA Council and served a three-year term as ALA councilor-at-large (2009-2012). In 2011 she was the recipient of the Isadore Gillbert Mudge Award, an ALA award that recognizes distinguished contributions in reference librarianship. Zabel is the immediate past editor of Reference & User Services Quarterly (2006-2012). She is the editor of Reference Reborn: Breathing New Life into Public Services Librarianship (Libraries Unlimited, 2011). She holds a master of urban planning degree (1980) and a master of science in library and information science (1982) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


"This title is a perfect fit for both public and academic librarians. The word 'rethinking' is apt; this guide truly examines current changes in library collections. New librarians will want to dive into the volume . . . Experienced librarians might skip around, using the book as a reference for pertinent topics, such as ebooks and digital collections. . . . It is a solid companion to any of the American Library Association fundamentals of collection development books. The textbook-style reading is ideal for academic librarians, public librarians, or MLS students."—School Library Journal, October 2, 2014

"What makes this book of considerable merit is it moves past providing mainly foundational concepts and traditional topics. Instead, much of the book focuses on advanced theory and its practical application in the field. . . . [P]rofessionals in these positions may find this book beneficial as it discusses technological innovation and electronic collections. . . . Out of the few collection development texts available, this book is highly recommended."—Journal of Academic Librarianship, December 2, 2014

"This collection is inspiring. . . . In Rethinking Collection Development and Management, librarians and administrators will find creative ideas and thoughtful approaches to the many challenges of twenty-first century collection development."—Libraries and the Academy, September 18, 2015

"This is an interesting and ambitious book that provides a good picture of the many changes taking place in collection development and management. It willbe useful to those interested in lookingat the current state of particular areas of collections work, as well as someonetrying to understand what is happeningto the field generally. It should proveuseful to practicing librarians in bothacademic and public libraries and tostudents in library school who want an overview of the area. . . . . [T]he book serves as a noteworthy attempt to document numerous changes occurring in the field and anyone who is interested in collections will find it worth reading."—Technicalities, December 3, 2015

"Rethinking Collection Development and Management seeks to cover a lot of ground, and the chapters range from editorial to prescriptive in tone. The unifying thread, however, is the described subjective experiences. Indeed, as an anthology this is not unusual, and the stand-alone quality of each chapter lends the text the supplementary facility advertised. While articles of comparable tone and quality are frequently published in the professional literature, this volume juxtaposes the perspective of the public librarian alongside that of the academic and that of one working in a large research university alongside the small liberal arts college. In this way the reader is given the opportunity to rethink, as it were, his or her own experience of collection development and management in the larger context of an evolving field."—Library Resources and Technical Services, February 1, 2016

"In Rethinking Collection Development and Management, the editors have assembled 29 interesting and thought-provoking essays pertaining to the full spectrum of collection development. . . . This book is recommended for larger public and academic libraries and for all libraries that are wrestling with the increasing complexities surrounding the concept of collection development as libraries transition from providing access to scarce materials to ubiquitous access in an increasingly digital arena."—Library Quarterly, April 28, 2016
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