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Information on the Specialised Information Services Programme

The Specialised Information Services programme enables German-based researchers of all disciplines to access specialised literature and research-specific information quickly and directly, irrespective of work location. As a nationwide system, the DFG-funded specialised information services complement the information infrastructures of the universities and research institutions by offering supraregional services for peak demand.

In order to accommodate the various scientific interests, specialised information services are run by a large number of efficient libraries with particular significance for the respective subject areas or for the main interests of the region. The DFG does not stipulate a specific organisation by subject matter for services and for the distribution of responsibilities among the libraries; the libraries themselves use their own experience and dialogue with the scientific community to establish a demand-driven and practical distribution structure based on subject matter and regional principles. For large areas of natural and engineering sciences and for medicine and economics, the system is complemented by central specialised libraries.

Specialised information services are designed to focus on the interests of the research community in each discipline. The services differ from the basic tasks of research libraries and offer added value compared to existing services. Libraries in charge of a specialised information service may apply to the DFG for partial financial support to help them fulfil their mission.

This funding programme is a development of the DFG-funded special subject collections system which it is replacing. This restructuring was the result of an evaluation of the programme which took place in 2010-2011.

During a three-year transition period (2013-2015), the previous DFG-funded special subject collections were transferred to the new "Specialised Information Services" funding programme.

The conditions for submitting a proposal and receiving funding can be found in Guidelines 12.10 and the additional programme documentation cited within these guidelines. Proposals can be submitted every year up to 15 May. In order to prepare for the proposals' review process in good time, we also request that applicants submit a non-binding notification of intention in writing or via e-mail two months prior to the deadline for submissions (15 March). The notification of intention should describe the thematic focus of the planned specialised information service, which agreements have been made with other such services and, if applicable, which collaboration partners will be involved.

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