Collection Development

Find out more about the collection, how and what we collect, including topics, geographical focus, languages and formats.

Library > Collection Development

The ERSTE Foundation Library collection has been developed since 2007 to support the research requirements of the foundation’s staff and project partners, as well as the public in general. ERSTE Foundation Library presently holds about 11,000 items. The collection grows by an average of about 1,000 items per year through purchases, private donations, book exchange and contributions by ERSTE Foundation community members.

New acquisitions at LibraryThing

Collection description

The library holdings cover a wide range of subjects, focusing on the development of open societies, on contemporary socio-economic and cultural changes, and on political conditions and situations in Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe.

The library houses comprehensive collections of research and information material on

– Contemporary art and media theory
– Architecture and urbanism
– Cultural theory and policy
– Feminism, gender, and queer theory
– Minority and migration issues
– Romany studies
– Demography
– Education
– Information literacy
– New media and journalism
– Economic and political developments
– Social problem-solving
– Social banking and entrepreneurship
– Financial literacy
– NGO and project management
– Philanthropy
– European debates and integration

Collection guidelines

The criteria used in making a selection include specializations, formats, languages, geographical guidelines, and policies on collecting fictional texts.

Our main focus is on collecting actual material to support our primary goal and on providing access to information through online catalogues and search services. We therefore also collect appropriate indices to provide access to information about off-foundation collections, supporting knowledge development and information related to ERSTE Foundation’s mission, projects, and goals.

The main collection consists of monographic and serial publications. It includes monographs, exhibition catalogues, artist books, studies, surveys, journals, magazines, newspapers, back files, and annuals. Other formats collected include digital resources, maps, motion pictures, sound recordings, and video recordings.

The library’s major collection is in English and German, with materials in other languages collected from the publication activities of the foundation’s projects and communities.

Geographical guidelines
Based on the foundation’s focus, the library collects information resources on Central, Eastern, and South-Eastern European countries. In particular, we cover the whole region of the so-called post-socialist countries, since historical and contemporary developments in these countries cannot be understood without their international relationships – be it in social, demographic, financial, cultural, or any other dimensions of political or everyday life.

Special collection of fictional texts
Because we consider fictional texts not just as mass-market products of minor importance within the scope of language, national and gender performativity and identity, the library collects and maintains a collection made up of reading materials translated from their respective languages into German or English.