Best of Core Forum: Stewarding Relevance; Subject-Diverse Weeding

Description: Weeding collections is a perennial challenge in academic and research libraries, one that requires resources and time amid dwindling staff, space, and financial commitments. This presentation, intended for collection development librarians, subject selection specialists, collection managers, and collection support staff, provides an overview of the planning, implementation, and method for a customized collection assessment and weeding of a large multi-subject research collection. In addition to achieving its primary goal to deaccession duplicated or non-relevant materials that were no longer in support of the institution’s collecting and programmatic goals, current research mission, or historical relevance, it fostered cross-unit collaboration, provided an opportunity to re-contextualized forgotten materials, and left stakeholders with a feeling of accomplishment and community. This home-grown assessment was developed by an initial working group of five and implemented by a staff of two. The method was mindful of available staff time and technology and was conducted while the collection was in active use. Charts, worksheets, and preparation materials will be demonstrated.

This webinar was previously presented in-person as a session at the 2023 Core Forum. We are hosting this webinar, with the session adapted and presented live as a virtual event, to extend its reach.


Learning Outcomes:

At the end of the webinar, attendees will be able to:

  • Outline a weeding program plan that does not interrupt service or circulation given an active collection in need of a monograph holdings assessment;
  • Integrate conflicting cross disciplinary collecting priorities to determine retention given multiple stakeholders in a monograph collections assessment scenario; and
  • Adapt the provided review checklist to the assessment process given a goal of developing a large-scale weeding project of monographic materials.


Who Should Attend: Collection development librarians, subject selection specialists, collection managers, and collection support staff.



Daria Wingreen's career in libraries spans 27 years. Though comprehensive, it has been in one place: the Smithsonian Libraries (now Archives). She's been a collections technician, copy cataloger, reference librarian, branch manager, and collection development officer. Her understanding of federal museum research librarianship is both thorough and nuanced. Daria is currently the head of the Smithsonian Libraries Research Annex where she is organizing a 400,000+ item collection shift with the aid of student workers.

Alan Katz has worked in libraries for 16 years. He’s been a library technician, reference librarian, and collections project manager. In “other duties as assigned” Alan has migrated paper workflows to electronic for gift donations, and he’s drafted SLRA’s project plan for a large-scale collection shift. Recently, Alan was detailed to oral history assignment.


Tech Requirements

Core Webinars are held in Zoom. Speakers or a headset for listening to the presentation are required. You may interact with the presenter and ask questions through text-based chat. Closed captioning is available in the Zoom platform. The webcast will be recorded and the link to the recording shared with registrants shortly after the live event.