SFU Library International Studies collections policy

The School for International Studies is a new centre in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at Simon Fraser University.  It offers undergraduate and graduate programs leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Arts (major in International Studies) and Master of Arts in International Studies.  The School aims to expose students to a diversity of perspectives on international affairs, and to help them to build the knowledge and skills that will prepare them for careers, whether in the public, private or non-governmental sectors.

The School is based at the SFU Vancouver campus.  Graduate courses are offered here, while undergraduate courses are offered at both Vancouver and Burnaby campuses. 

Drawing from the disciplines of Economics, Comparative Politics, International Relations, History and Anthropology, the School is interested in the interconnected areas of peace and security, international development, human rights and international law, and governance and civil society.

Faculty members research and write on themes that include global trends in political violence, security, trafficking, international relations theory, the causes and consequences of state failure and of civil wars, post-conflict reconstruction, civil society and democratisation, international criminal justice, the history of intelligence, Islam and politics, and growth and poverty in the context of economic globalization.

The regional interests and expertise of Faculty include the Balkans and the Eastern Mediterranean, Russia, the former Soviet Union, through the Middle East, into Central, South and Southeast Asia - though the teaching program also embraces Latin America and Africa.

The School is also the home of the Human Security Report Project which produces the Human Security Report, Human Security Brief and a range of human security-related e-resources.

Collection development is the responsibility of the International Studies Liaison Librarian. Liaison with the School of International Studies is maintained through the Departmental Representative as well as with other faculty members when required. Regular contact with other liaison librarians and teaching departments occurs through the sharing of relevant review material.

SFU Resources

There is a fair amount of subject overlap with other SFU departments – Political Science, Economics, History, Sociology and Anthropology.  The WAC Bennett Library is the main location for resources on these subjects.  The International Studies collection, which is being developed at Belzberg Library, focuses on development and security issues in the geographical regions studied by the program, the Balkans and the Eastern Mediterranean, Russia and the former Soviet Union, the Middle East,  Central, South and Southeast Asia, Latin America and Africa.

Regional Resources

The University of British Columbia also has a large collection which covers many branches of the discipline.

Consortia and Document Delivery

SFU belongs to three consortia (BC Electronic Library Network; Council of Prairie and Pacific University Libraries; and the Canadian Association of Research Libraries). Document delivery agreements exist with all three of these consortia which allow delivery of journal articles and books from member libraries in a timely manner. Holdings and direct requesting from over 40 libraries are accessible through the Interlibrary Loan webpage and from many databases, and interlibrary loans are also arranged with other libraries around the world, as needed.  Besides document delivery benefits, membership in these and other consortia, including the Canadian Research Knowledge Network, also offers substantial savings on the collective purchase of licensed electronic resources.

General Collection Guidelines





The emphasis is on the acquisition of materials in English.

Chronological Guidelines

The material purchased will normally be current in print titles.

Geographical Guidelines

Not applicable

Treatment of Subject

Selection will be primarily from - biographies, bibliographies, reference works, etc

Types of Materials

Collecting is split between books and journals. There is an emphasis on e-books, e-journals and web resources.

Date of Publication

Emphasis is on current publications. Retrospective acquisitions are normally only for the replacement of important titles which have deteriorated or disappeared.

Coordination / Cooperation with Others

The interdisciplinary nature of the School of International Studies creates a reliance and dependence on other parts of the library collection. These areas are mainly in the following disciplines: Political Science, Economics, History, Sociology and Anthropology.

Other Factors for Consideration

Not at this time.


Subjects and Level of Collecting

The following table lists the main subjects collected by the SFU Library in support of International Studies teaching areas and research interests. Subjects listed are collected to varying depths. The method in which the library selects books on each subject is listed in the third column of the table. A designation of “Books” in this column means that items which fit the General Guidelines (above) for the subject in question are sent on an approval basis to the library. In such cases, a significant portion of the books on that topic will be acquired for the collection. A designation of “Forms,” on the other hand, means that only brief descriptions of the books on the subject in question are sent to the library. The liaison librarian, sometimes with the assistance of the faculty representative or other faculty members, then selects the relevant items for acquisition by the library.

History Political History Forms
  Social History Forms
Special Area Studies Africa Forms
  South Asia Forms
  Eastern Europe Forms
  Soviet Forms
  Middle East Forms
  Central Asia Forms
  East & Southeast Asia Forms
  Islamic Forms
  Latin America Forms
Sociology Social Conditions Forms
Economics Economic Conditions Forms
  Economic Growth & Development Forms
  International Economics Forms
Political Science Political Analysis Forms
  Government Reorganisation Forms
  Comparative Politics Forms
International Relations Analysis of International Affairs Forms
  International Institutions Forms
  International Security Forms
Applied Interdisciplinary Social Studies Development Studies Forms
  Population Studies-Immigration & Emigration Forms
  Population Studies-Refugees & Aliens Forms
  Conflict & Its Resolution Forms
  Violence Forms
  Crimes Against Humanity Forms