An Overview of Nankai University Library

    Founded in 1919, Nankai University Library is the earliest private university library in China. In 1927, Mr. Lu Muzhai donated money to build “Mu Zhai” Library, which was destroyed by Japanese bombing in 1937. During the war of resistance against Japanese aggression, Nankai University, Peking University, and Tsinghua University merged to form the National Southwestern Associated University in Kunming and established National Southwest Associated University Library. Later in 1946, Nankai University returned to Tianjin and the Library was rebuilt.  

    Nankai University Library is comprised of four library buildings: Wenzhong LibraryYifu Librarythe Central Library and the Economics Branch Library. The Central Library at the Jinnan Campus was built in 2015, the other three library buildings are all at the Balitai Campus among which the Wenzhong library was built in 1958 and the Yifu Library was built in 1990. The Central Library at the Jinnan campus is the landmark of the new campus. The architectural complex with the Central Library building as its main part won the 2017 China Construction Engineering Luban Prize (National Prime-quality Project). The Central Library offers 36 individual study rooms and 30 seminar rooms equipped with a variety of multiple-function devices, which can be used for academic discussion, project team meetings, and information demonstration or news release, achieving direct interactions beyond distances.

    Nankai University Library consists of 11 departments, including the Administration Office, Cultural Construction & Promotion Department Development, Resource Construction Development, Readers’ Service Department(Jinnan Campus), Readers Service DepartmentYifu Campus, Multimedia Service Department, Rare Book & Special Collection Department , Information Consultation Department, Subject Service Department, Network Technology Department ,and Logistics & Security Department. By March 2019, there are 122 staff members in total, 114 librarians with a bachelor’s degree or above, and 46 with senior professional titles.

    Nankai University Library is renowned for its rich and varied collections which cover the fields of humanities, social sciences, natural science, applied technology, and so on. By the end of September 2019, the total holdings of Nankai University Library amounts to 3.9million volumes, including 2.8 million volumes of general books, 414,000 volumes of current printed periodicals, more than 618,000 E-books  and 28,000 kinds of E-journals with the best coverage in economics, history, mathematics, and chemistry discipline. Enjoying the honor of the National Key Protection Unit of Ancient Books, Nankai University library hosts nearly 300,000 volumes of precious thread-bound ancient books. Till now, Nankai University Library provides access to 158 database systems and 427 databases, which covers the main subjects and academic research areas of the university.

    Nankai University Library actively expands various forms of innovative services, including circulation services such as books borrowing, multimedia reading, reference consultation, interlibrary loan and document delivery, knowledge information services such as sci- tec novelty search, citation searches, subject service, talent assessment and intellectual property service. Users can enjoy smart library services such as mobile library, RFID, information commons, 3D navigation, self-service borrowing and returning, self-service document printing and self-help book sterilizing, and may also experience new multimedia audio-visual equipment such as IMAC Pro, Kindle Reader and 3D printer as well.

    Notably, Nankai University Library is a member of the China Academic Library & Information System (CALIS) and one of the seventeen central libraries of the China Academic Social Sciences and Humanities (CASHL). The Library also serves as the resource support center of the Digital Library Construction program of Academic Libraries in Tianjin, and the Secretariat of the Steering Committee for the Academic Libraries in Tianjin. Authorized by the Ministry of Education, Nankai University Library established the Sci-tech Novelty Retrieval Workstation and the Foreign Science Teaching Materials Center. Recently we has successively signed inter-library loan and document delivery agreements with CALIS, CASHL, NLC, NSTL, TALIS and other units, which has extended our services and resources.

    Nankai University library maintaina wide range of partnership with domestic and foreign academic libraries and shares with these partners the best practices in collection development, network resource sharing, and personnel training. As one of the first members of the East Asian University Library Association, we have signed the co-operation agreements with the libraries of The Chinese University of Hong Kong, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Kangwon National University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Wuhan University, Beijing Normal University, and other universities at home and abroad.

    Over the past decade, Nankai University Library has also made great achievements in academic research. Librarians have undertaken several research projects of different levels, including 1 nation-level project, 12 provincial-level projects of Tianjin, 4 CASHL research subjects, 4 TALIS research subjects, 4 research subjects of Foreign Teaching Materials Center of China Education Ministry, 2 CALIS research subjects and 54 research projects of Nankai university. More than 180 papers have been published in various academic journals, and the research funds have been increasing year by year.

    Aiming to facilitate the university in its Double First-Class agenda and being user-oriented, Nankai University Library are committed to developing resources as its priority, services as its foundation, technologies as its core, and management as its key point. The Library will advance its intelligentization, informatization, and digitalization while promoting the management in a more scientific, standardized, and normalized way. By the centenary of the founding of Nankai University, the Library has become the center of literature resources, learning activities, and disciplinary services, and also the center for cultural exhibition and exchange. It will continue striving towards the goal of becoming a modern service-oriented academic library.