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Diversifying the Collection

02 May 2024

Find out about ARU library's work to diversify the collection

This month, we’re sharing our work on diversifying the collection and inviting students and staff to work with us. We want our library collection to reflect the diversity of our staff and student body and the global academic community we belong to. Diversifying our collection means consciously buying books by authors from marginalised and minoritised groups across all subject areas; it also means buying books about diversity related topics such as intersectionality, neurodiversity, social class, black history and women in STEM subjects.

We’ve put together displays in our Chelmsford and Cambridge libraries about our ongoing work to diversify our collection.

Display showing books and information board

What Have We Done So Far?

The display shares some of the work we’ve done in collaboration with staff and students. For example, one of our Subject Librarians put together this reading lists about Diversity in Health and Medicine to highlight specific subject resources. They worked with lecturers and a faculty intern on a second reading list: Anti-racist Resources.

Based on student feedback, we’ve expanded our collection of fiction by African authors. You can find recent novels by NoViolet Bulawayo, Tsitsi Dangarembga, Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀, Stephen Buoro and others in Cambridge library. These print books can be requested between campuses or ebooks and audio books can be accessed through this curated list on the Libby app (you’ll need to log in first).

Learn more about this work and other examples on our displays.

How Can You Get Involved?

Our work diversifying the collection is ongoing and we’d love to collaborate with students and staff by taking suggestions of specific titles or working together on larger projects. Would you like to suggest a book? You can use our online form. Do you have a more complex suggestion for a piece of work that would help to diversify our collection? Get in touch with your Subject Librarian here.

Topics: Library resources