Mission

The European Studies Section (ESS) represents librarians and others who are professionally involved in the acquisition, organization, and use of information sources originating in or related to European countries. ESS is instrumental in promoting cooperation between libraries and scholars in West European fields and publishers and book dealers in Western Europe.

Our aim is to promote the improvement of library services supporting study and research in European affairs from ancient times to the present.


The European Studies Section (ESS) was formed on September 1, 2017 by the merger of two predecessor sections of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). These two previous sections were Slavic and East European Studies (SEES) and Western European Studies Section (WESS). It was logical to form a section encompassing the whole of the European continent.

SEES was East and WESS was West,
but now the twain have met.

See The History of ESS for chronicled details of the section itself and of the two earlier sections from which it was formed.