The geography collection serves the needs of faculty and students in the Geography Department as well as a number of other departments across campus.

Current areas of collecting

The geography selector covers economic, environmental, political, cultural, social, behavioural, historical, urban, industrial, and regional geography; geography of resource industries, manufacturing, retail and service activities; geography of development in the Third World and Third World urbanization; energy, resource use and allocation; ethnicity, aboriginal people and ethnic groups in Canada. Special emphasis is on regional geography of Canada (especially Western Canada and the Arctic); the Pacific Northwest; the Pacific Rim in general and in particular: China, Japan, Southeast Asia; the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe (especially Siberia); Latin America; aboriginal people and ethnic groups in Canada.

Research and publishing characteristics

Geography is considered a composite of pure and applied disciplines, overlapping with many other departments and programs. Pure: volume is relatively low and average price is medium. Conference proceedings and journals are particularly important. Applied: Volume is medium and price ranges from medium to high (for data analysis, GIS and cartography). Conference proceedings, journals, maps, aerial photographs and monographs are all important.


Predominantly in English with selected materials in the major European languages.

Geographic origin

North America, Europe, Asia and Australasia.

Collections in other UBC Libraries/ Areas of overlap

Art, Architecture & Planning Library: Housing, locational analysis, land use and land policy, urban geography, and transportation studies.

Asian Library: Materials in Asian Languages.

Science & Engineering Library: All aspects of physical geography (geomorphology, climatology, meteorology, hydrology, ecosystems, atmospheric science, permafrost) as well as computer mapping and spatial analysis.

Special Collections: Maps of North America pre-1900 and of other parts of the world pre-1800; popular works on travel and guidebooks for B.C., and monographs on historical cartography.

Woodward Library: Medical geography and biogeography.