Nankai University’s New Library
After the policy “Reform and Open”, Nankai University built a new library. It is normally called “New Library” by Nankai’s professors and students, to differentiate it from the old one on the north bank of Xinkai Lake. The New Library was donated by Sir Shao Yifu, and was completed in 1990. This solemn building is located in the center of Nankai University, facing east. It is surrounded by many buildings: Chemistry Building on the east, Boling Building on the west, Fansun Building on the south, and Square Lecture Hall on the north.
The New Library of Nankai University
Between the Chemistry Building and the New Library there is Jingye Square, an open and wide square, which is also students’ first choice when they need a place where to hold important activities and celebrations. In the northeast part of the Square stands the statue of Yang Shixian, pioneer of Nankai’s Chemistry. In spring, when the days become warmer, peach flowers, begonias, and azaleas blossom all over the square. In their spare time, Nankai’s students also like to go to this place to fly kites.
On the left of the main entrance of the New Library there is the statue of the Goddess of Knowledge. The goddess is raising a book, while looking east. Her eyes, pure and firm, symbolize the spirit of Nankai aimed at learning determinedly and persistently. In front of the entrance and close to the stairs, there is a semicircular cultural square. On one side of the library, a platform was set for the readers: through this platform, readers can walk to the reading forest placed on the southwest corner.
The main entrance of the New Library
The New Library became one of Nankai University’s most important scientific research service and study centers. The main building’s area covers 7,400 m2, with supporting area of 3,560 m2, so in total the New Library has a surface of 11,000 m2. The library is equipped with lights, ventilation, and multifunctional rooms. Except for the front, the other sides are concisely designed and coordinated with the buildings nearby. In the front, two transparent tower-type staircases are designed to emphasize the entrance, and a cone made of glass is set in the upper part of the entrance hall.
The total collection of the New Library of Nankai University amounts to more than 3.82 million books, including 2.45 million Chinese books, 603,000 foreign books (more than 20 languages), 300,000 ancient books, more than 2,000 different Chinese and foreign journals, and 300,000 electronic books. The books are mainly focused on Economy, History, Mathematics, Chemistry, etc. In recent years, the library has made great efforts not only to develop classical resources, but also to improve electronic materials. Until the end of 2012, the New Library had 97 accessible database systems and 315 sub databases, mainly covering all the subjects and academic areas of the university.
The New Library in autumn
While the old library’s major collection is focused on scientific books and journals about art and science, the New Library mainly collects and borrows books about art and sciences, as well as serving as administration center.
In 2013, the library introduced the “LIBSYS Book Management System” designed by Huiwen Software Company. This system aims at improving the computer integrated management of all the works linked to the library, and setting a firm foundation for creating a serving platform for document resource sharing and achieving library’s smart services. All loan desks and reading rooms started to implement book borrowing through open library, and the working hours reached up to 114 hours/week. Meanwhile, many multifunctional electronic reading rooms with more than 200 computers were arranged in the central library to provide electronic information searching and consulting services to the users. In the electronic reading rooms, the users have access to the Internet, CDs, and other electronic platforms. To help users to improve their skills, the library also opened to the public elective courses specialized on “Information Literacy and Information Resources Retrieval” and other topics.
Study Room in New Library
As a member of “CALIS - China Academic Library & Information System”, Ministry of Education’s Science and Technology Novelty Search Workstations, and Tianjin universities’ Security Center for Digital Library Construction of Liberal Arts, the New Library of Nankai University is making active contributions to national higher education institutions’ resource sharing and to the construction of Tianjin universities’ digital library.