Annual Resource Sharing Summary

In July of each year, I collate and summarize the resource sharing statistics from the IAMSLIC Distributed Library project. 2010/11 represents the ninth complete year of the resource sharing program. A total of 5310 requests were submitted during 2010/11, the highest volume of activity recorded to date. A total of 33,486 requests have been submitted via the system since its inception in 2002.

The resource sharing program continues to be broadly international in scope, with 73 different IAMSLIC lending libraries in 23 countries receiving borrowing requests from 124 IAMSLIC libraries in 47 countries, similar to previous year’s numbers, but with a modest increase in the number of libraries that submitted borrowing requests. 36 (49%) of those 73 lending libraries are in the United States and they received 66.7% of the total requests, a much larger percentage than in recent years, which have averaged close to 60% from U.S. member libraries.  Libraries in Germany, Australia, Mexico and Canada collectively received 26.2% of the borrowing requests.

The Alfred Wegener Institut in Bremerhaven (Germany) regained its status as the top lending library this year, followed by the Hatfield Marine Science Center of Oregon State University (U.S.) , the University of Hawaii (U.S.),  Hopkins Marine Station (U.S.), and the Pell Marine Science Library at the University of Rhode Island (U.S.) .

The Latin American region continues to make active use of the resource sharing program while contributing a substantial amount of lending in return, including an significant percentage of requests filled within the region. A growing number of EURASLIC libraries are active users of the system, both lenders and borrowers. EURASLIC still conducts much of its regional interlibrary loan activity via its discussion list, so the number of transactions via the Distributed Library does not reflect the full volume of resource sharing in the region. The volume of activity has begun to increase  in AFRIAMSLIC and remains moderate in the Pacific region.

The complete set of data is available on the Distributed Library website via the Resource Sharing Statistics link at It includes a spreadsheet for each year that offers charts and additional analysis of lending and borrowing patterns. I encourage you to look at the 2010/11 numbers and will be glad to answer any questions you may have about the data.

Steve Watkins
California State University, Monterey Bay, Library

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