HathiTrust relies on member-contributed bibliographic metadata as a key part of HathiTrust’s management of content ingest, collection management and preservation, collection analytic capacity, and user discovery and access. It further supports the activities of the HathiTrust Research Center.  Bibliographic metadata contributed by members exists within a larger community metadata context as the collection grows in scale, value, and impact for users.

Managing the 18+ million items contributed by more than 60 member libraries requires a foundation of both policy and workflows. Several member working groups, from 2018 through 2022, helped develop the basis of HathiTrust’s current approach to metadata. Operationally, the entire catalog depends upon the work of HathiTrust partners at the University of California as well as ongoing contributions by members, which benefit both the local library and HathiTrust collection.

Metadata Policies

This policy documents the terms by which HathiTrust provides open access to HathiTrust-collected, -managed and -generated metadata.

By this policy, HathiTrust does not correct nor update the content of contributors’ records, except where necessary.

Metadata Strategy Statement

We commit to actively manage and share bibliographic metadata entrusted to our care.

Working With HathiTrust Metadata

Bring HathiTrust titles into your own catalog and make it easier for users to find the digitized books they need.

Tab-limited files of metadata describing all works in the HathiTrust collection may be used for collection management, record retrieval, or building links to HathiTrust works.

Use this option to retrieve metadata from full-view items in MARC21 or unqualified Dublin Core formats.

This API can provide you with a limited number of brief or full bibliographic records for real-time queries.

Submitting Metadata to HathiTrust

Metadata Specifications for Submission

Part of the contribution process involves preparing and submitting bibliographic metadata for the digitized content.

Zephir: Metadata Management

Led by a team at the California Digital Library, part of the University of California, Zephir is the bibliographic metadata management system for HathiTrust.