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National Library initiatives: the UK Higher Education experience

Law, Derek (1997) National Library initiatives: the UK Higher Education experience. Journal of Academic Librarianship, 23. pp. 127-131. ISSN 0099-1333

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Creation of internetworking infrastructure has long since taken on an international character and Derek Law's essay serves to inform us of just how variable the effort may be from one nation to the next, given differences in political traditions and institutional structures, not to mention the character of educational traditions. The Follet program in the United Kingdom has placed a premium on broad access by end users different from the somewhat market driven approach in the United States. It has also taken advantage of the opportunities provided by central authority which may seem unthinkable in the United States. At the same time common values and strategies are also evident, particularly the commitment to strengthening the information (read "knowledge ") creating role of higher education and promoting training of students in advanced information skills as a direct benefit to healthy economic growth. Similarly, the goals of access without charge to institutional users and subscription based funding will be familiar to American librarians who continue to pursue these goals.