Based on personal experience with nearly a dozen different library assessment projects, Baird has pulled together the salient points that librarians should bear in mind when planning to assess their collections. Following a brief discussion of why assessment is important, he covers such basics as how to gather information, interpret it, and use it to further the mission of the library. Liberally sprinkled with examples from the projects he has worked on, Baird's guide will help both new and experienced librarians conceptualize the assessment strategy that best fits the mission of their collection.
The publication of this book is timely because many libraries face strategic decisions about issues such as on-site versus remote storage of print collections, space reallocation within central buildings, and preservation program planning. Baird's extensive experience in preservation and collection development makes the book credible. His style is conversational, and he emphasizes practical applications from his own library and consulting experience. He includes references with each chapter and an index at the end of the book. The primary value of this book is Baird's presentation of collection development and preservation factors. Bibliographers, liaisons and even library administrators will find the information clear and helpful. The small size of the book makes it easy to read and locate information, like a handbook....the book is a good introduction to the topic and is recommended for librarians involved in collection management and preservation.--Technicalities