Singing the Praises of Centralized Selection Process

Here's one from Library Journal touting the benefits of centralized collection development, based on the experiences of the Phoenix Public Library system.

It has not always been easy to make the transition to centralization. Some librarians resisted the loss of the selection task, which is widely recognized as a high-level professional responsibility. We responded by encouraging all of the librarians to see selection as just one of many professional assignments and to take credit for the new professional tasks they are now able to tackle.

The author makes some very good points, but it's one of those issues that makes me feel very bristly.


I dunno. The whole "we encouraged them to blah blah blah" bit sounds much more than anything else like bureaucratese for "You can't have this responsibility anymore, so screw you, and if you don't like it, there's the door."

I fought this battle years ago and lost--the hardest part being management's attitude that they didn't respect the front line librarians' professional judgement.
The article expresses this attitude quite clearly--I'm glad I don't work for them! Do any unions take up this kind of problem?