Date of this Version
Library Philosophy and Practice 2012
Librarians the world over are tasked with the responsibility of acquiring, processing, disseminating this information to users, and due to constant exposure of clients to these materials the rate of degradation increases. Every library is prone to two kinds of deterioration: biological deterioration caused by insect attack/fungi growth or environmental deterioration caused by extreme dampness, wide fluctuations of relative humidity, variations in temperatures, light and atmospheric pollutants (Maravilla, 2008).
Library materials consist of media, non-book and non-print resources. Examples of media resources include computer hard-drive, databases, library software; non book materials include CD ROMs, audio and video tape, while print materials include pictures, magazines, books, maps & photographic materials etc. Library materials deteriorate faster when publishers use sub-standard materials, of very low quality like paper which changes colour when exposed to either internal or external light, or the wear of paper glue and thread for sewing the book. This is very rampant in our local publications. We know that books cannot last forever thus as librarians we are left with the option of preserving this materials for future generations.
Statement of Problem
Deterioration of information resources in Nigerian University libraries have been established in literature as a universal phenomenon. While these materials are negatively affected by natural and human factors, observations and experience have shown that they are more vulnerable to decay and damage by climatic and environmental factors. The deterioration of library materials, especially the print materials have been in existence for some decades but have escalated drastically. Librarians must declare a state of emergency on the rate of deterioration of their collections, in other to retard the level of deterioration. However, in spite of the awareness and technological advancement in the field of preservation and conservation there seems to be more books deteriorating. Consequently, the need to find out preservation and conservation issues in selected private university libraries in Southwest Nigeria.
Objective of the Study
The specific objectives are to:
i. To investigate the preservation and conservation techniques in use in the selected libraries.
ii. To investigate if there is a policy applied by these libraries in preserving the library materials.
iii. To find out the types of deterioration experienced in the selected private universities.
iv. To investigate the level of degradation of resources experienced in the selected libraries
v. To investigate the level of use of ICT in preservation and storage of materials
vi. To discover possible challenges for effective preservation and conservation and to proffer solutions