May 25, 2000 Grant from Luce Foundation To Support Asian Acquisitions and Fellowships

Press Contact: Craig D'Ooge (202) 707-9189
Public Contact: (202) 707-3302

The Henry Luce Foundation has approved a grant of $570,000 to the Library of Congress to support a three-year program to strengthen acquisitions of research material from China and support fellowships for postdoctoral research in the Library's Asian collections.

Since 1978, the gradual decentralization of publishing in China has resulted in great increases in the volume, diversity, and quality of publications. The Library's current arrangements with commercial vendors, supplemented by exchanges with other institutions, researchers and individual catalog orders, have been insufficient to meet the needs of the Library's Asian collections, widely considered to be the most comprehensive and accessible outside Asia.

The grant from the Henry Luce Foundation will enable the Library of Congress to hire individuals in five key Chinese cities in order to improve acquisitions of materials from these regions. These representatives, working under the direction of the Library of Congress, will supplement the acquisitions work performed by the Library's dealers and exchange partners in China.

The representatives in China will identify the range of research materials available from commercial and noncommercial sources; establish links with individual publishers, local and national government agencies, and research institutes; search antiquarian book markets to secure out-of-print material; and screen dealer recommendations before shipping material to the United States. The grant will also support a study to compare the Library's holdings in specific subject areas with those of other U.S. research libraries to guide and coordinate acquisition efforts.

The Library will also offer up to four annual fellowships for postdoctoral research in the Asian collections of the Library of Congress for the next three years. The fellows program, which will be administered by the American Council of Learned Societies in conjunction with the Library of Congress Fellowships in International Studies, is designed for postdoctoral scholars who are in an early stage of their careers, within seven years of having been awarded their degree. Research projects may focus on single or multiple nations of East and Southeast Asia and may involve multidisciplinary or cross-disciplinary research.

Scholars interested in applying for a fellowship should contact Dr. Prosser Gifford, director of Scholarly Programs, Library of Congress, Washington, DC 20540 (202) 707-3302.

The Library of Congress is the largest library in the world, with more than 119 million items in all formats. Approximately half of the Library's book and serial collections are in languages other than English. The Library's highly acclaimed Web site ( is among the most visited of all federal Web sites. It receives more than 4 million hits per working day. On April 24, in honor of its 200th anniversary, the Library launched a new Web site for children and families, designed to put the story back in history. This entertaining and free educational site is supported by a national public service ad campaign created by the Ad Council.


PR 00-077
ISSN 0731-3527