Available Indexes

Resources for Retention Libraries

The mission of HathiTrust is to contribute to research, scholarship, and the common good by collaboratively collecting, organizing, preserving, communicating, and sharing the record of human knowledge. HathiTrust’s Shared Print Program ensures preservation of print and digital collections by linking the two objectives.

HathiTrust member libraries are critical to the success of HathiTrust’s Shared Print Program. The resources on this page are intended to provide quick access to information related to our program for retention and member libraries. If you notice something is missing, please let us know using the Feedback form at the top or bottom of the page.

Learn More about HathiTrust Shared Print Program

MOU, Policies, Modifications, Governance, and Funding

HathiTrust Shared Print Program Assessment

Participating Libraries

Resources for HathiTrust Shared Print Retention Libraries

The resources listed here include: 

      • Policies and Best Practices for Making Commitments
      • Ability to Update HathiTrust Shared Print Registry Specifications 
      • Discovery
      • Disclosure
      • Process for Reallocating HathiTrust Shared Print Program Shared Print Commitment
      • Orientation and Informational Documents for Library Staff
      • Resource Sharing 

HathiTrust's Process for Identifying Commitments

Shared Print Program Updates, Presentations, Webcasts, and Statistics

Considering Participation

Frequently Asked Questions

Additional Resources for Shared Print


MOU, Policies, Modifications, Governance, and Funding

Shared Print Agreement (MOU)

The Agreement is a long-term document containing provisions that are fundamental to the program and are not likely to change. The Agreement makes reference to but does not incorporate the Operating Policies and Guidelines (information below) which are more detailed requirements that may change over time as HathiTrust libraries gain experience with the program. The Agreement document was developed in conjunction with the University of Michigan Office of General Counsel. The final Agreement and Policies were approved by the HathiTrust Board of Governors in June 2017.

Operating Policies and Guidelines

The Operating Policies and Guidelines were based on recommendations originally made by the HathiTrust Print Monograph Archive Planning Task Force in 2015. Those policies were reviewed and updated by the Shared Print Advisory Committee (SPAC) in 2016-2017. Prospective Retention Libraries provided explicit feedback about the policies on two occasions and the policies were available for review on the shared print libraries website.  The HathiTrust Program Steering Committee (PSC) also reviewed the proposed policies. The HathiTrust Board of Governors may revise the Operating Policies and Guidelines from time to time as needed, after consultation with Retention Libraries, other HathiTrust members, and advisory groups.

Process to Change Shared Print Policies

The HathiTrust Shared Print Program is based on a pledge among the member libraries to maintain the scholarly record over a long period of time. The defining documents were designed to balance two important needs: 1) ensure a strong long-term commitment from the Retention Libraries so all member libraries may rely on the ongoing availability of the retained holdings; and 2) remain flexible enough to accommodate future changes that member libraries may determine to be necessary.

HathiTrust Shared Print Program Officer

Heather Weltin is the Shared Print Program Officer. Is this role, she is responsible for planning and implementing a shared print program among the more than 145 HathiTrust members. The primary goal of this program is to ensure preservation of both print and digital collections by securing retention commitments for print volumes that mirror HathiTrust digital holdings.

Please feel free to contact Heather Weltin for any questions regarding the program or this page.

Shared Print Advisory Committee

The HathiTrust Shared Print Advisory Committee (SPAC) is a standing committee of the HathiTrust partnership, charged with making key recommendations to the Program Steering Committee (PSC) and to the Program Officer for Shared Print Initiatives about policies and procedures necessary to implement and sustain a HathiTrust Shared Print Program (HTSPP) for the benefit of the membership.


HathiTrust manages the program, and funds to support it are allocated  through the annual budget process involving the Board of Governors and the membership. Except for expenses explicitly funded by HathiTrust through the budget process, Retention Libraries are expected to support other local costs of participation.

HathiTrust currently provides financial support for the Shared Print Program for these categories of expenses as approved by the Board:

  • Program management and communications (e.g. Shared Print Program Officer)

  • Systems (e.g. develop and maintain the HathiTrust Shared Print Registry and other services)

  • Contracted services to support analysis and development of the program

HathiTrust Shared Print Program Assessment

At the end of August 2020 HathiTrust began a process to gather feedback from our 77 retention libraries regarding their views and opinions about our Shared Print Program. The goal was not only to learn about satisfaction levels, but to also discuss and identify potential new services and enhancements for our program. You can read the entire report here


Participating Libraries

Phase 1 and Phase 2 Libraries (new to Phase 2 indicated with *)


Allegheny College*

Arizona State University

Boston University*

Brandeis University

Brigham Young University*

Brown University

Bryn Mawr College

Carleton College*

Claremont Colleges

Colby College

Columbia University

Dartmouth College*

Dickinson College*

Duke University

Emory University

Georgia Tech University

Getty Research Institute

Harvard University

Indiana University

Iowa State University

Johns Hopkins University

Lafayette College

Macalester College*

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

McGill University

Monash University - New Retention Library!

New York Public Library

New York University*

North Carolina State University*

Northwestern University

Ohio State University

Oklahoma State University*

Pennsylvania State University*

Princeton University

Southern Methodist University*

Swarthmore College

Syracuse University

Temple University*

Texas State University

Tufts University

Union College*

University of Alberta

University of Arizona*

University of British Columbia*

University of Calgary

University of California, Merced*

University of California, San Diego*

University of California, Santa Cruz

University of California Northern Regional Library Facility (NRLF)

University of California Southern Regional Library Facility (SRLF)

University of Chicago

University of Colorado Boulder New Retention Library!

University of Delaware

University of Florida

University of Georgia*

University of Houston*

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

University of Iowa

University of Kentucky - New Retention Library!

University of Maryland*

University of Michigan

University of Minnesota

University of Missouri

University of Notre Dame

University of Oklahoma*

University of Pennsylvania

University of Pittsburgh

University of Queensland

University of Rochester*

University of Sydney - New Retention Library!

University of Tennessee, Knoxville*

University of Texas at Austin

University of Toronto

University of Virginia

University of Washington

University of Wisconsin-Madison

University of Wyoming*

Wake Forest University*

Washington University, St. Louis

West Virginia University*

Yale University


Resources for HathiTrust Shared Print Retention Libraries

A resources folder has been created to assist Retention Libraries with procedures and questions we are often asked. The folder includes the following:

Policies and Best Practices for Making Commitments 

This folder includes outlines for the recommended best best practices for identifying potential commitments, reviewing commitment files, including a decision tree, submitting files, asking for error reports. 

    1. Best Practices for Identifying Potential Commitments
    2. Best Practices for Reviewing HathiTrust Shared Print Program Files

    3. Best Practices for Submitting HathiTrust Shared Print Program Files  

    4. Decision trees for Reviewing HathiTrust Shared Print Program Files

    5. Options for Error Reporting


Ability to Update HathiTrust Shared Print Registry Specifications 

HathiTrust is excited to announce the new ability for retention libraries to update their existing retention commitment records. The following categories can be updated in the HathiTrust Shared Print Registry: 

  • Identifier updates:  Provide updated local identifiers or OCLC numbers for existing commitments. This should be done before any other updates. 
  • Status changes: Identify volumes that are lost, damaged, or committed in error
  • Data updates: Provide new or updated information for optional data fields

Full directions and options regarding the new process are located in the folder. 


This folder includes how HathiTrust members can discover shared print commitments in OCLC products once and examples from Member Libraries showing how they have decided to display shared print commitments in their local discovery systems. It includes examples for HathiTrust Shared Print commitments, and other programs, including serials and monograph examples. 


This folder includes examples from Member Libraries showing how they have cataloged HathiTrust shared print commitments in their local system along with how to register your commitments in OCLC's Shared Print registry: 



Process for Reallocating HathiTrust Shared Print Program Shared Print Commitments 

As a retention library for HathiTrust’s Shared Print Program, member libraries agree to “take all reasonable steps to replace lost, stolen, or seriously-damaged Retained Holdings in a timely manner and to notify HathiTrust if a volume cannot be replaced” (section 2.4). This folder contains a process for reallocating lost or missing commitments. 

Orientation and Informational Documents for Library Staff

The following documents were created to provide an introduction to HathiTrust's Shared Print Program and the work involved for the following library staff:

Resource Sharing 

As part of our commitment to develop new and innovative ways to benefit Member Libraries, HathiTrust started to look at quick ways to facilitate the sharing of our shared print materials without disrupting current resource sharing practices across all of our member institutions. At this time, we are happy to announce a HathiTrust Shared Print Group Access Capability (GAC).


HathiTrust's Process for Identifying Commitments

In Phase 1, HathiTrust facilitated a “quick launch” by asking libraries to identify retention commitments for items in print that duplicated the HathiTrust Digital Library.  Member institutions identified commitments and no analysis was conducted prior.

For Phase 2, HathiTrust worked with OCLC’s Sustainable Collection Services to identify items that did not receive retention commitments in Phase 1. It was decided that the program would aim to retain up to 5 copies of each candidate title and distribute proposed retentions across U.S. Census regions where possible (Northeast, Midwest, South, and West). Canadian libraries participating in the Shared Print Program were assigned to the census region geographically located nearest to them.


Shared Print Program Updates, Presentations, Webcasts, and Statistics


Considering Participation

HathiTrust began in 2008 as a collaboration of the universities of the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (now the Big Ten Academic Alliance) and the University of California system to establish a repository to archive and share their digitized collections. HathiTrust quickly expanded to include additional members and to provide them with an easy means to archive their digital content.

The initial focus has been on preserving and providing access to digitized book and journal content from the member library collections. This includes both copyrighted and public domain materials digitized by Google, the Internet Archive, and Microsoft, as well as through local initiatives. The member libraries aim to build a comprehensive archive of published literature from around the world and to develop shared strategies for managing and developing their digital and print holdings in a collaborative way.

The primary goals of the HathiTrust Shared Print Program are to ensure preservation of print and digital collections by linking the two, to reduce overall costs of collection management for HathiTrust members, and to catalyze national/continental collective management of collections. Key attributes of the program are:

  • Secure retention commitments for print holdings that mirror book titles in the HathiTrust digital collection

  • Maintain a lendable print collection distributed among HathiTrust member collections

  • Reflect support by and provide benefits to all HathiTrust members

  • Build on existing shared print and resource-sharing arrangements and avoid disturbing members’ other affiliations.

Partnerships with member libraries and beyond are key to achieving these goals.

Please contact our Shared Print Program Officer, Heather Weltin to inquiry about participation.


Frequently Asked Questions

Our Shared Print Program has an extensive list of Frequently Asked Questions. If you cannot find an answer to your question, please contact our Shared Print Program Officer Heather Weltin.


Additional Resources for Shared Print

The Partnership is a federation of national shared print monograph programs with the goal of coordinating collaboration across the programs. HathiTrust is a founding member of the partnership and has members on the Steering Committee and several working committees in order to participate in national dialogue surrounding shared print endeavors. The goal of the Partnership is to support cost-effective retention of and access to print book collections with the goal of ensuring the long-term preservation, accessibility and integrity of these scholarly print resources.

The Print Archive Network Forums are hosted by the Center for Research Libraries and provide a venue to promote opportunities for knowledgeable individuals at libraries and consortia to share information, expertise and best practices on the strategic management of print holdings. HathiTrust regularly attends the PAN forums and is frequently asked to provide an update on our Shared Print Program.

The Center for Research Libraries is working with OCLC on a two year grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to  make accessible actionable data for shared print serials management. HathiTrust is represented on the Shared Print Advisory Board for this program by Heather Weltin, our Shared Print Program Officer.

Although from December 2014, this SPEC Kit explores the extent of ARL member libraries’ participation in shared print programs, the type and scope of programs in which they choose to participate, the rationale for participation, the value and benefits the programs provide to ARL and other libraries, and the roles different libraries are playing in them. It contains several important pieces of information related to shared print that HathiTrust member libraries, or those libraries considering participating in the Shared Print Program might find of interest.