Extract from the Basic Policies and Selection Standards for Acquisition of Library Materials

I. Approaches to acquisition of materials for Ritsumeikan University Library

Through its acquisition, administration, provision and other elements of management of library materials, the Library shall contribute to the advancement of research, education, and self-directed learning.

Accordingly, in the course of acquiring library materials, the Library must uphold the Declaration on Library Freedom (See supplementary note) and work with a long-term perspective to make acquisitions that enhance the University's research and educational activities, augment the personal development and cultivation of its students, and advance and enrich everyday life and culture.

At the same time, the Library has a social mission to acquire materials as intellectual and cultural property. In recognition of the fact that the materials accumulated over many years embody the library's philosophy, and by extension the philosophy of the University as a whole, it is necessary to work to acquire distinctive materials that reflect Ritsumeikan's founding spirit, educational ideals, and local identity. The Library must also expend its budgeted funds properly and effectively.

II. Basic policy on acquisition of study materials

  1. The Library shall support students' education and self-directed learning through its acquisition, administration, and provision of materials.
  2. Acquisition of materials shall be organized and systematic at all times, and reflect users' demands and interests as well as social conditions.
  3. A broad range of materials shall be acquired, including books, periodicals, microfilm materials, and electronic data. Priority shall be given to the use of databases and digitized information.
  4. Holdings shall be evaluated and inspected with a view to ensuring that they are sufficient for students' learning and educational needs.
  5. Materials shall be updated as necessary with a view to collection-building and in light of the condition of materials.
  6. These acquisition policies shall be made known to University constituents and users, and their understanding and collaboration sought in developing collections responsive to intellectual interests and demand.

III. Acquisition policy and selection standards for study materials

  1. Types and range of materials to be acquired
  2. (1) General collection While focusing primarily on academic texts related to lectures and curricular subjects offered in the University's undergraduate colleges, a broad approach shall be taken to acquisition, including interdisciplinary and educational texts.
    (2) Reference collection Tools essential to learning and research shall be acquired, including bibliographies, indexes, catalogs and other secondary materials, as well as an extensive range of dictionaries, encyclopedias, chronologies, and pictorial texts.
    (3) Non-printed resources Non-printed materials shall be acquired with consideration given to their distinctive characteristics and based on an appreciation of future publication trends such as the growth in new electronic resources.
    (4) Periodicals Newspapers, academic journals, white papers and statistical records, almanacs, general-interest magazines, secondary materials and other periodicals shall be acquired in consultation with each Library and the faculty of the recommending College. In addition, responsibility for acquisition and preservation of materials shall be shared with each Library, and reviews of usage undertaken at regular intervals.
  3. Selection standards for acquisition of study materials
    Selection standards concerning the acquisition of study materials are provided for under the “Standards for Selection of Study Materials”, a series of specifications determined subject to review by the Library Materials Selection Committee.
  4. Examples of materials not to be acquired
    1. "How-to"-style publications and those with excessive emphasis on hands-on aspects (other than materials relating to job-hunting and careers, information technology manuals, etc.)
    2. Manga(excluding those materials forming part of complete works or series)
    3. Fiction monographs
    4. Promotional materials issued by political parties, political societies, religious organizations, companies, foreign governments, etc.
    5. Works that lack objectivity and academic content; self-funded publications for publicity purposes
    6. Low-priced publications that are easily accessible (excluding renewal-purchase paperbacks, etc.)
    7. Others: publications relating to hobbies (with marked individual bias) and entertainment, children's books, pornography, etc.

IV. Methods for acquisition of study materials

  1. Selection
    Selection of materials for acquisition shall be the responsibility of the Library Materials Selection Committee and be overseen by the Manager of the Office of Library Administration..
  2. Purchase procedures
    If a material falls under any of (1) through (3), the Manager of the Office of Library Administration shall decide whether to purchase the material based on the opinion of the Library Committee and expert advice of teachers, and submit a report to the Library Materials Selection Committee within 1 year after purchase.
    (1) Material that costs \100,000 or more per item.
    (2) Material that is published within a designated fixed period of time and that costs \100,000 or more in total.
    (3) Periodicals that are published without a designated fixed period of time, or library of literature that is placed in a specific section.
  3. The Library Materials Selection Committee shall hold discussions to decide whether to purchase subscriptions to such periodicals for a period of longer than 1 year.

V. Materials requiring university-wide consultation; distinctive materials

  1. Acquisition of materials of an interdisciplinary nature, those encompassing multiple volumes, high-priced materials and the like shall, where necessary, be subject to consultation among related institutions, to ensure that they are allocated effectively.
  2. Efforts shall be made to expand the Saionji Collection and other collections already developing a distinctive collection profile. Attention shall be given to the development of other such distinctive collections.
  3. Efforts shall be made to expand the Ritsumeikan Collection (publications by full-time faculty and staff, undergraduate students, graduate students, and alumni of the University).

VI. Donated materials

In light of the development of the university's collections to date, donations of large quantities of materials shall not be accepted (pursuant to a decision of the third Library Acquisitions Committee meeting of 1981). If donations are accepted under special circumstances, they shall be handled pursuant to Article 11 of the Ritsumeikan University Library Administration Regulations (「立命館大学図書管理規程」).

supplementary note : Statement on Intellectual Freedom in Libraries

It is the most important responsibility of libraries to offer collected materials and library facilities to the people who have the Right to Know as one of their fundamental human rights.

Article 1: Libraries have freedom in collecting their materials.
Article 2: Libraries secure the freedom of offering their materials.
Article 3: Libraries guarantee the privacy of users.
Article 4: Libraries oppose any type of censorship categorically.

When the freedom of libraries is imperiled, we librarians will work together and devote ourselves to secure the freedom.