Collection Development Policy

The Denver Public Library collects materials, in a variety of popular formats, which support its function as a major information source for the demanding needs of a metropolitan population. The collection also serves the popular and recreational needs of the general public, and reflects the racial, ethnic and cultural diversity of the community.

Customer use is the most powerful influence on the Library’s collection. Circulation, customer purchase requests and holds levels are all closely monitored, triggering the purchase of new items and additional copies of high demand items. The other driving force is the Library’s strategic plan.

In addition to customer demand, selections are made to provide depth and diversity of viewpoints to the existing collection and to build the world-class Western History/Genealogy and African American Research Library collections. The Denver Public Library collects to the research level in the following areas: Western History, Genealogy, Federal Government Publications and African American History in Colorado and the Rocky Mountain West.

Inherent in the collection development philosophy is an appreciation for each customer of the Denver Public Library. The Library provides materials to support each individual’s journey, and does not place a value on one customer’s needs or preferences over another’s. The Library upholds the right of the individual to access information, even though the content may be controversial, unorthodox or unacceptable to others.

Materials for children and teenagers are intended to broaden their vision, support recreational reading, encourage and facilitate reading skills, supplement their educational needs, stimulate and widen their interests, lead to recognition and appreciation of literature and reflect the diversity of the community. The reading and viewing activity of children is ultimately the responsibility of parents, who guide and oversee their own children's development. The Denver Public Library does not intrude on that relationship.

View the entire Collection Development Policy (PDF)

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