Bibliographic Services and Collections Management, a core programme of the NLSA, serves to:
- Build a complete collection of South African publications through the Legal Deposit Act by receiving all materials acquired through legal deposit.
- Extend and supplement the NLSA’s collections by purchasing material and receiving gifts and donations to fill identified gaps in collections on or about South Africa and southern Africa.
- Create bibliographic records of all new acquisitions and ensure that all records created are accessible.
- Facilitate library standards training to ensure compliance with international bibliographic standards in South Africa. The SANB plays an active role in the development, maintenance and propagation of standards used in cataloguing. Standardisation facilitates the training in the international standards used in cataloguing including cataloguing, Authority Control, Subject Access (LSCH) and Machine Readable Cataloguing (MARC).
The programme is composed of the following units:
- South African National Bibliography (SANB)
- Index to South African periodicals (ISAP)
- International Standard Agency (ISN)
- Collections Management – this unit, situated at the Cape Town campus, develops, stores, and preserves collections and cultural heritage. Collections Management meets the needs of the individual collector or collecting institution while ensuring the long-term safety and sustainability of the cultural objects within the collector’s care. Collections Management assumes the administrative responsibilities associated with collection development and is closely related to SANB.
Legal Deposit is the legal requirement of a person or group to submit copies of their publications to a repository, usually a library. The requirement is extended to all formats and types of material. By law, one copy of every South African print/on-line publication must be deposited to the NLSA by its publishers and to the four other designated legal deposit libraries depending on the size of the print run.