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Marine Science and Technology

TitleMarine Science and Technology
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsWebster, JG, Butler, BA
Book TitleMagazines for Libraries
ISBN Number0000-0914
Keywordscollection development, Marine biology, Marine Science, periodical selection
AbstractPeople of all ages are intrigued by the ocean, its inhabitants, dynamics and future. Our knowledge grows, but we change the ocean as we use its resources thus creating environmental problems and management challenges. When this volume is published, the Gulf of Mexico will not have recovered from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Ocean acidification is a growing problem. Corals reefs are dying due to rising ocean temperatures. Global warming and sea-level rise, the Pacific Garbage Patch, the collapse of fisheries, endangered marine mammals, hypoxic zones .... the list goes on. Periodicals are one place people look for the latest research as well as creative solutions to this list of challenges. However, there is a dearth of quality, focused marine science titles for the general public. National Geographic, Scientific American, and other general science and environmental periodicals are valuable resources. These, combined with the general interest titles listed in this section provide a solid and affordable collection for public and school libraries. For the academic and scientific audiences, the literature is multidisciplinary, interdisciplinary, and highly specialized. The needs of the audience, the library's budget and consortial affiliations should shape the local collection. A university with a marine engineering program will need different journals than one teaching only marine biology or a high school library attempting to cover all of the sciences. Even the core academic collection, once simple to identify, eludes us as more specialized titles emerge, prices increase, and new topics develop. Librarians need to take particular care in marine science to delineate the scope of their collection. Such considerations include geographic focus, discipline segmentation, teaching needs, and research requirements. Breadth and depth are possible in a marine science collection, but at a high cost typical to many scientific fields. Inflating journal prices make it virtually impossible for a single library to acquire all the core journals necessary to support a marine biology curriculum and research, so cooperative collaborative collection development with other libraries is the answer. When faced with a choice between journals, libraries and researchers should choose an option which allows the author to retain copyright. All journals in this list are "Green" publishers in the Sherpa Romeo classification unless otherwise noted.Identifying marine science information is also challenging because one index does not cover the field comprehensively. Web of Science provides adequate general access, but is expensive. For the subfields of oceanography, the academic librarian will need access to resources such as SciFinder Scholar (Chemical Abstracts) or GeoRef, depending on the research question. Biosis and Zoological Record cover the biological aspects well, but have considerable overlap. Aquatic Science and Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA) historically has been an essential resource for the applied science of the marine and estuarine environments. However, its timeliness and consistency of coverage has diminished in recent years. An alternative is Fish, Fisheries and Aquatic Biodiversity Worldwide. Policy and management information remains more difficult to access and requires multiple indexes including ASFA, Google Scholar, and relevant social sciences databases. For general public and basic academic collections, indexes such as Gale's GREENR or EBSCO's Academic Search Premier or GreenFILE are adequate. Our relationship with the ocean will not disappear. People will continue to want timely information on ocean conditions, its inhabitants, and its problems. The complexity of the marine environment is exciting, but the complexity of the information about is presents an ever-increasing challenge to library collections.