chapter  Chapter 6
24 Pages

Automation

ByToby Burrows

The development of automation in British university libraries has continued, despite the marked limitation in other areas of activity, notably staffing and acquisitions. When surveyed by SCONUL, 79% of university libraries said that they had received additional money for equipment for automation between 1979/80 and 1984/85; 34% had been given extra funds for staff. In 1985/86, 34% of libraries received additional money for equipment, and 9% for staff. Some 55% considered they had been able to devote an adequate level of funding to equipment for automation up to 1984/85, while 42% felt funds for equipment were adequate in 1985/86. 1 There is evidence here that provision for library automation has been perceived as more satisfactory than for other areas of library activity, but these statistics conceal a whole range of difficulties, tensions, and uncertainties about the future.