Each year, Louisiana’s agricultural industry contributes billions of dollars to the nation’s economy. In 2020 alone, it generated around $3.2 billion and represented 2.8 percent of the total state GDP. In order to protect and develop one of the state’s most crucial industries, LSU generates education and research that refines existing technologies and develops new tools, methods, and crop varieties. In support of these goals, LSU Libraries remains a comprehensive resource for researchers interested in the study of agriculture, farming, and related topics.
For example, LSU has the only research library in the state that provides access to CAB Abstracts, one of the world’s most comprehensive agricultural research databases. In addition, LSU Libraries has created and curated more than a dozen research guides related to agricultural scholarship that range from introductory to advanced research materials. These online guides are freely available to the LSU community as well as the public. They provide links to a variety of databases, journals, government resources, and other research tools, making it easy for students and researchers to find relevant and reliable information.
They are composed of materials that address the various challenges facing the agricultural industry, including issues related to sustainability, climate change, and food security—and efforts being made to combat them. Additionally, they provide in-depth information on the various branches of agricultural science (agronomy, horticulture, animal science, etc.) as well as the latest technologies used in modern agriculture, including precision agriculture, biotechnology, and genetic engineering.
Furthermore, LSU Libraries has a staff of full-time research experts whose job is to help students and faculty with their research at any stage. This additional support saves researchers time and money searching for relevant information on their own.
Not only does LSU Libraries help LSU faculty and student to generate research that is critical to innovation in agriculture, but it also preserves, publishes, and makes openly accessible the research and scholarship they generate via LSU’s digital repository, LSU Digital Commons. Users have downloaded agricultural research from Digital Commons more than 650,469 times globally.
Whether they are conducting scientific research, exploring the history and culture of agriculture, or simply learning more about this important industry, LSU Libraries is a valuable tool for students and researchers alike.