Library Gift in Kind Policy

Policy No.: 6


Approval Date: September 2013

Last Revision:  August 2013

Responsible Executive:  Associate University Librarian, Collections


Title: Policy on accepting Gifts-in-kind (excluding art works)  [17.09.13]

(For gifts of art works, see the ‘Policy on the Acquisition of Works of Art at the University of British Columbia (UBC) Library. Policy No.: 4)


Background & Purposes

As part of its mission, UBC Library is committed to enhancing its collections in a manner which supports the University’s curriculum and research needs. The library is pleased to consider gifts-in-kind (GIK) of materials that further this goal. However, potential donors of non-archival material should be aware that the Library will generally require an itemized list of items on offer before acceptance can be entertained



Acceptance of gifts

All offers of gifts-in-kind to the UBC Library will be reviewed by the appropriate librarians to determine their suitability. (For a list of whom to contact click HERE)  Gifts with a potentially significant value, generally over CAD 5,000, and those affording particular processing, storage and other requirements will be referred to the Significant GIK Review Committee for their decision.

Any decision to accept or decline a potential gift will be informed by the Library’s collection policies and practices and by the University’s current and anticipated curriculum and research needs. (For additional information about the collection practices of many of the Library’s branches and divisions click HERE)  Among the types of material generally considered for acceptance are:

  • Material, not currently held by the Library, that supports current or anticipated collection parameters.
  • Material that could be used to replace missing copies or copies in poor condition in the Libraries collections.
  • Non-book collections and unique items, such as archival collections, manuscripts, photographs, media, recordings as they relate to the history of the University, British Columbia, or other collection areas.
  • Locally significant collections and materials.

Various considerations may inform the Library’s decision to accept or decline a gift. These include the cost of processing the gift (including staff time) as well as the space required to house the material. 

In some instances, the Library may request donor support to help defray the costs of shipping, appraisal, cataloguing processing, preservation and reformatting (for example, conversion from an archaic digital format to one which is currently supported).

We do not generally accept:

  • Material which does not support teaching and research at the University
  • Material in poor condition or requiring special curatorial measures
  • Runs of journals and magazines
  • Material that duplicates that already in the collection

Gifts, other than unsolicited gifts, are considered to be accepted by the library only when the Gifts Approval form has been signed by both the donor and the accepting librarian


Governing Principles

The Significant Gifts-in-kind Review Committee

This committee, chaired by the Associate University Librarian for collections development, is responsible for determining the suitability of potential gifts where the gift is

  • physically voluminous (over one-hundred items)
  • of a potentially significant financial value (over CAD 1,000 for a single item or over CAD 5,000  for a collection as a whole.)
  • mixed-media or multi-format or comprised of art works, artifacts or material in digital formats
  • in need of specialized physical processing or conservation measures
  • rare
  • in foreign languages for which there is no in-house expertise


Disposition of gifts

Gifts accepted by UBC Library become the property of UBC, under the stewardship of UBC Library. In accordance with existing University policies, we reserve the right to determine retention, disposition, location, treatment, and other considerations related to use of the material.

A tax receipt for the fair-market value of the gift will be issued if requested by the donor. Appraisals provided must be done independently of the donor and in keeping with current Canada Revenue Agency regulations.


Unsolicited gifts

Unsolicited gifts are presumed to be accepted at the point of receipt. The Library receives a large number of these from both individuals and institutions. While this is gratifying and indicates a widespread interest in helping us strengthen our collections, we regret we can only acknowledge those we choose to retain. As with other gifts, we reserve the right to dispose of unsolicited gifts as appropriate.




Questions and monetary gifts

Please feel free to direct any gift-related questions and concerns to the Library Development Office. They can also offer advice on making monetary gifts. 


Related Internal Procedural Documents

These include Handling GIKs in the Library and can be found on the Library’s staff intranet site under ‘Collections’.  Login.