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Introduction: The American Information Resource Centers are located in the 4 major cities of the country Kolkata, Chennai, Mumbai and New Delhi. They were established by the American Embassy in order to throw light on the United States, its people, its policies and also to foster better diplomatic relations.
They American Embassy Libraries offer a plethora of resources, programs and services to provide accurate and up-to-date information on contemporary American politics and society, international relations, U.S. economy and global issues. The network of libraries cater to the needs of people from all walks of life which includes students, teachers, researchers, government officials, politicians, media representatives, and business professionals. The American Information Resource Centers in India are public libraries rendering services in reference, research and borrowing.
- Collection at American Information Resource Centers in India: The 4 libraries across the country have huge and multifarious collections consisting of American books, journals, reference materials, U.S. government publications, and think tank reports. The total collection is approximately 82,721 books, 586 print periodicals with over a 10,000 journals in electronic format, 2,425 videocassettes, including subscriptions to several leading American newspapers and magazines. The resources range from general reference and circulation collections to specialized collections of business management materials and American studies. There are important materials pertaining to contemporary issues like economic reforms, infrastructure development, sustainable development, drug abuse, AIDS prevention and reduction, human rights, democracy, the global information infrastructure, multiculturalism, American society and values, history and politics.
- Other facilities at American Libraries in India: ESL Services- Through this section, the American Libraries in India facilitate teaching of American English through Audio -Visual modes and other aids.
Reference and Electronic Resources-The resources comprise of dictionaries, directories, encyclopedias, almanacs, periodicals, periodical indexes, CD-ROM databases and online databases. Since this is a public library reading room facility encourage better reference work. However the competent staff of the Library responds to research and reference queries submitted through telephone, fax, mail, or e-mail.
Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC)- All the collection at the library is readily accessible through a computerized Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC).
Subscription-Based Online Services: -
EBSCO-An effective powerful online reference system that provides a variety of full-text databases on subjects covering sciences, social sciences and humanities.
Factiva-Provides a single point of access to a deep archive of news and business information not available on the free web. It encompasses 9,000 sources in 22 languages, including influential local, national and international newspapers, leading business magazines, trade publications including the much-reputed Wall Street Journal.
Galenet Database- This unique software provides instant, user-friendly access to more than 7,200 periodicals.
Lexis-Nexis -A full text database of current and historic federal legislation, bill tracking, bill texts, state legislation, case law, law reviews especially required by students and professionals in the field of Law.
ProQuest Direct -A database of over 4,000 indexed titles and over 2,000 full text journals with images covering current news and events, fields of research, and corporate information.
CD-ROM Products- American Information Resource Center Libraries has good collection on subjects like economics, human rights, intellectual property rights, social and political issues, management etc.
- Membership at American Information Resource Centers in India: The memberships offered at American Information Resource Center Libraries are of three kinds: Individual, Distance, and Institutional. For an individual member one must be a resident Indian and over18 years of age.
For getting distance membership of American Information Resource Center Libraries, one should reside in the vicinity of Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Mumbai. In distance membership books are sent through registered post and members can request customized bibliographies on specific subjects of their interest. Institutional membership is extended to profit earning and non-profit organizations.
For all of the above memberships there is an enrollment fees payable through either cash/check/DD in favor of American Embassy, New Delhi or American Consulate at Kolkata/Chennai/Mumbai.
- Contact information of the 4 centers of American Information Resource Centers in India:
24 Kasturba Gandhi Marg
New Delhi 110001
Tel: 91-11-2331-4251 and 91-11-2331-6841
38-A Jawaharlal Nehru Road
Tel: 91-33-22881200/06 (7 lines)
4 New Marine Lines
Tel: 91-22-2262-4590 or 91-22-2262-4592