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Library Policies: Collection Development

Collection Development Policy


The collection development policy for the Forefront Library reflects its mission when considering the needs of the Library's users.  These users are identified as:

             1.   Forefront Members,

             2.    Forefront staff, and

             3.    members of the public.

 Aim of the Collection Development Policy Statement

This policy has been created to provide a statement of purpose for the public and to provide written guidelines for staff members responsible for adding, replacing, or withdrawing materials from the collection.  It may also assist other staff members and Forefront Members and trustees involved in reference service and budget planning to understand and support the goals of collection development.

Goals of Collection Development

Decisions about collection development are based on the following goals:

1. to develop a collection that addresses present user needs, and anticipates those of the future,

2. to provide timely, accurate, and comprehensive information in a variety of formats,

3. to select material in an efficient and cost effective manner within budgetary allowances and constraints, and

4. to reach as many Forefront Members as possible.

Responsibility for Collection Development

The Library Services Manager holds the primary responsibility for the selection of print and non-print resources. The Library Services Manager works closely with other staff members who are encouraged to recommend materials for selection and to reflect user suggestions.

Core Areas of Collection Development

Foundation grantmaking -- All appropriate material in this field.

Administration of foundations -- Collection is comprehensive unless an item clearly duplicates existing coverage.

Corporate giving -- All appropriate material in this field.

Philanthropy -- This category includes history, philosophy and ethics, statistical material, and tax regulations.  All relevant materials are purchased.

Nonprofit organizations -- Acquisition in areas of fundraising, administration, and marketing is selective because of the great number of monographs published.  In other areas determined by need, the collection will be more comprehensive.

General reference directories -- Coverage includes business and biographical directories, lists of associations, and sources of giving other than foundation and corporations. 

Specialized directories for organizations and individuals -- New items are purchased only if they are essential in these areas.  Revised editions of works already in the collection will be purchased if they best meet user needs.

Biographies of philanthropists and histories of specific foundations-- Works which contain significant coverage of the subject's philanthropic activities.

Business and social entrepreneurship -- Materials which are appropriate to the interests and use of Forefront Members. 

International philanthropy -- Materials which are appropriate to the interests and use of Forefront  Members.  In general, foreign language materials are not collected.

Core Area Formats

Monographs -- Criteria for the selection of monographs include:

       1.  appropriateness to the scope of the collection

       2.  professional reviews/recommendations

       3.  reputation of author and/or publisher

       4.  existing coverage of the subject in the Forefront collection

       5.  accuracy, objectivity, and currency of the content

       6.  usefulness of the item for more than one user group

       7.  format (quality of indexing, illustrations, type style, etc.)

       8.  availability of information in another source that better meets the selection criteria above

       9.  cost of item in relation to quality and expected use

Major titles on foundation and corporate philanthropy are purchased with an emphasis on adding to the Valerie S. Lies Family Philanthropy Collection.

Titles that provide a local focus (Chicago and Illinois) on foundation and corporate philanthropy are also purchased.

Serials -- Criteria for selection of serials are similar to those for monographs.  However, acquisitions must be selective, and purchase may be made on a trial basis, since long-term commitment implies continuing costs of renewal, or binding, as well as storage needs.  Serials will be re-evaluated for quality, use, and price annually.

E-books – The criteria for e-book selection would be similar to those for choosing monographs, with the additional consideration of user demand relative to cost.

Forefront Archives – The Forefront Archives are separate from the archive section of the Library. They are currently located on the bookshelves in the closet near the Library Workroom. The purpose of the Forefront Archives is to preserve materials that are primary to the history of Forefront and Donors Forum.  Candidates for the Archives include any publications published by the Donors Forum, Forefront, or that mention the Donors Forum or Forefront. The  Library Services Manager may add or weed materials from the Archives at his or her discretion.

Gifts Policy

The Library may accept gifts of appropriate materials from individuals or institutions, provided that there are no restrictions as to their disposition.  Donated materials will be reviewed using the same criteria applied to regular acquisitions, and will be added to the collection based on the judgment of the Library Services Manager.  All gifts become the property of Forefront.