U.S. Government Documents Easily Accessible Online at Columbia Libraries

NEW YORK, July 23, 2004 - The U.S. Government Documents website at Columbia University Libraries connects users to a central collection of documents generated by the U.S. Government. It is now easier for students, faculty, and other patrons to access the Libraries’ extensive collection of U.S. Government Documents.

The portal features a direct link to the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, which publicized its final report on July 22, 2004. Users can view videos and read the transcripts of the hearings, and access all of the staff statements. There is also a link to a relatively new resource, CQ Homeland Security, which pulls together news, legislation, and action taken at the Federal level to secure the country and prevent terrorist attacks.

“The events of September 11, 2001, have fundamentally changed the landscape of government in the United States,” explained Jerry Breeze, Government Information Librarian at Columbia’s Lehman Library. “Efforts to discover the causes and exact details of the attacks have been accompanied by a restructuring of the mechanism of government, in order to prevent further attacks. Users can read these history-making documents first-hand via this website.”

Homeland Security is just one of thousands of topics which can be studied using this resource. The U.S. Government Documents website also has links to multiple subject guides and Internet resources for government information at all levels including New York City, New York State, the U.S. Government, and intergovernmental organizations. There are also links to numerous search engines to help locate specific government information.

The print depository collection of U.S. Government publications is located in Lehman Library, and records for it are included in CLIO (Columbia’s online catalog and management system). Most government agencies are now publishing their studies and reports directly on the web, and links to those sites and reports can also be found on CLIO.

The Herbert Lehman Social Sciences Library includes materials acquired by Columbia Libraries since 1974 in political science, sociology, social anthropology, political geography, and journalism, as well as a rich collection of materials on post-World War II international relations. It also houses Columbia’s extensive collection of foreign newspapers. The library collects government publications received through the U.S. Federal Depository Program since 1976, with pre-1976 depository publications integrated into all of the Libraries’ collections.

Columbia University Libraries is one of the top ten academic library systems in the nation, with 9.2 million volumes, over 65,650 serials, as well as extensive collections of electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, and other nonprint formats. The collections and services are organized into 25 libraries, supporting specific academic or professional disciplines. Columbia Libraries employs more than 400 professional and support staff to assist faculty, students, and researchers in their academic endeavors. The Libraries’ website at http://www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb/ is a gateway to its print and electronic collections and to its services.

07/23/04 JD