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NELLCO Report - Read it today!

  • NELLCO membership is critical to law libraries during times of economic stress. As the world’s most significant consortium of law libraries, NELLCO's shared expertise is key to keeping members abreast of new legal databases and holding licensing costs at affordable prices.

    S. Blair Kauffman - Law Librarian and Professor of Law, Yale Law School (New Haven, CT)

  • In these days of the “new normal”, it’s nice to have NELLCO to partner with.

    Billie Jo Kaufman - Associate Dean for Library & Information Resources, American University, Washington College of Law (Washington, DC)

  • NELLCO is a great investment – both for the direct savings it negotiates on behalf of our library and for the educational and collaborative opportunities it inspires.

    Suzanne Wones - Executive Director, Harvard Law School Library (Cambridge, MA)

  • As the head of two departments, NELLCO is an enormous time saver for me. The fact that they are so responsive when a database issue occurs not only averts countless disasters, but it also enables me to focus my attention on the many other issues I must address. They work tirelessly to ensure our patrons have seamless access to our resources.

    Nicole Belbin - Head of Technical/Access Services at Western New England University School of Law (Springfield, MA)

  • NELLCO is collaboration. Law librarians have always worked together to improve access to legal information, and NELLCO’s accomplishments demonstrate how we can achieve so much more through our collective efforts than we can working individually.

    Paul M. George - Associate Dean and Director of Biddle Law Library, University of Pennsylvania Law School (Philadelphia, PA)

  • As a smaller academic law library, NELLCO saves us much staff time by setting up all database trials, and handling the negotiation of licensing terms and conditions. Networking and leadership opportunities, along with the ability to participate in a wide variety of initiatives, such as PALM Print, are another outstanding benefit.

    Pat Newcombe - Associate Dean for Library & Information Resources at Western New England University School of Law (Springfield, MA)




  • NELLCO has been a key organization assisting our library to save money and boost staff productivity since its founding. But NELLCO does far more than cooperative purchasing and continuing education for us. It is a community builder, a networking opportunity, and it raises the boats of all the members, as we work together in cooperation on projects, planning and the future of libraries.

    Elizabeth McKenzie - Director of the Moakley Law Library at Suffolk University Law School (Boston, MA)

  • The opportunity to work with colleagues and gather ideas and inspiration is unique to NELLCO, and sets a precedent that should be emulated more widely in other law library organisations.

    Ruth Bird - Bodleian Law Librarian, Oxford University (Oxford, England)

  • My primary concern right now is staying on top of the knowledge curve with respect to electronic services, and NELLCO is my "go to” resource, both for product awareness and professional development, to achieve that goal.

    Laura Justiss - Collection Development Librarian, Underwood Law Library, SMU Dedman School of Law (Dallas, TX)

NELLCO is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, incorporated in Massachusetts with its main office located in Albany, NY. Composed of more than 120 academic, private non-profit, and government law libraries in four countries, the consortium provides a mechanism for resource sharing and mutual benefit between law libraries.


Image by Joan Mas

Photo by Joan Mas under CC License 


A survey of NELLCO members revealed that 63% of respondents feel the most valuable aspect of membership is communicating and networking with NELLCO colleagues. Members want to share successes, explore ideas, and discover solutions.  

We're thrilled to launch the  new NELLCO website! This site greatly enhances our ability to provide you with a true online community, facilitating your expressed need for more robust communication. Members can find one another in our Directory, send messages and e-mail, create blogs,  engage in topical Forums and Interest Groups, and much more.   We hope you will explore and take advantage of everything the site has to offer! 


Image by Yuan 2003

Photo Courtesy of Blue Man Group 


NELLCO offers members a vehicle for collaboration. As our mission states in part:

Together NELLCO libraries collaborate to maximize resources and to support the missions of their institutions.

At a time when libraries across the board are being asked to do more with less, collaboration makes it possible to do more with more. We meet these mission objectives through collaborative licensing and purchasing of resources, through consortium-based projects and programs, through our Interest Groups' activites, and by remaining nimble as an organization so that we can respond to change readily.


Image by Vermin Inc.

Photo by Vermin Inc. under CC License 


Innovation is another defining characteristic of NELLCO. Innovation always contains an element of risk, and a law library acting alone may not have the resources to assume the risks or costs of doing something new. By sharing costs and spreading risks across the consortium, NELLCO is a safe haven, where members are able to experiment, often at the bleeding edge, without the fear of failure.

In almost 30 years of collaboration, NELLCO members have developed and implemented many innovative projects, and there are many more on the horizon. With the rapid pace of change in our profession, it's no longer simply a matter of thinking outside the box. To be truly innovative, burn the box!



More than a building that houses books and data, the library represents a window to a larger world, the place where we’ve always come to discover big ideas and profound concepts that help move the American story forward and the human story forward.

 Barack Obama, June 2005






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