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The economic downturn and libraries: an international survey

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There is some concern that libraries, particularly university libraries, are facing a very bleak future because of the word-wide economic downturn. Much of the evidence regarding the economic problems and consequent impacts is parochial, far from robust, and there is a suspicion of stakeholders talking the situation up. This paper presents robust and independent evidence on the extent to which libraries from around the world are experiencing financial hardship, the impacts that result, and what the future looks like. Comparative analyses are made on the grounds of country, sector, and size of institution. The particular situation of university libraries is highlighted and the implications of the findings are examined from the perspective of scholarly publishers.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: April 1, 2010

More about this publication?
  • Editor in Chief: Pippa Smart
    North American Editor: Judy Luther

    Learned Publishing is the journal of the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers, published in collaboration with the Society for Scholarly Publishing. The journal is published quarterly in January/April/July/October.

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    Learned Publishing will be moving to Wiley-Blackwell as of January 1, 2016. Please contact the publisher at for information on how to continue access to this title.

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