Research Libraries Are Big Business

The Chronicle of Higher Education has released its Almanac of Higher Education 2014.

"The Chronicle's 27th annual collection of data on colleges answers perennial questions like how much faculty make and which colleges are growing the fastest. This year's Almanac also gives you new ways to compare institutions. Which colleges have the most students enrolled in online courses? Which have the highest percentages of nonresident aliens?"

A data set that I find particularly interesting is the spending by university research libraries 2012-13. "Six universities on the Association of Research Libraries' Library Investment Index had more than 500 professional and support staff members in 2012-13, and 19 spent more than $10-million on salaries and wages for their professional staff. Eleven had total library expenditures exceeding $50-million."

Those are impressive numbers for library involvement at a major research university.

Some examples of data are:
Institution        Library Expenditures     Salaries of Staff         Materials              Staff
Harvard U.             $117,316,662           $39,049,607            $42,824,113               815
U. of Michigan      $67,289,114              $14,296,308           $24,708,760               535
Michigan State U.  $30,898,942             $6,078,705              $15,851,193              199
Wayne State U.      $19,647,678             $6,418,127              $9,410,721                  41

It's great to see that the institutions listed in the Index value their libraries and that the libraries are still so relevant to the output of important research.


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