China-US Million Book Project

China-US Million Book Project (MBP), which is named China-American Digital Academic Library (CADAL) in China, is a project collaborated between China and USA (, the project is funded by the Ministry of Education of China (MOE) and National Science Foundation of USA (NSF).

The objective of this project is to create a free-to-read, searchable collection of one million books, with a half million Chinese books and a half million English books, available to everyone over the Internet.

By now, 203,000 volumes of Chinese books and materials had been scanned, and another 85 thousand Chinese books and materials had been selected for scanning in the coming months. Over 25,000 volumes of English books selected from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) libraries in summer 2004 have been scanned, and the first container with more than 25 thousand books is shipping to China from Hong Kong University Library.

You are welcome to join the project if you are interested in this project. According to the criteria of book selection in the project, materials of the following categories are given preference for digitization:

  1. Basic core collection in your university library.
  2. Books without copyright issue such as government publications, books whose copyright either expired or never existed, and books whose copyrights are granted for digitization by the publishers.
  3. Born-digital content, such as technical reports, master and doctor thesis, conference proceedings, manuscripts etc.

We will provide your library with:

  1. Digitized version of materials selected from your library.
  2. Accession of MBP resources.
  3. Digitized resources with mirror site located at your library equivalent to 10 times of materials selected from your library.

Your library is expected:

  1. To provide the catalogue and amount of books to be digitized.
  2. To select and pack those books.
  3. To construct the environment for accepting digitized resources such as ftp, storage, etc.

In USA, the project is managed by CMU (, they are responsible for transporting books from USA to China as well as returning books to each American partner and they will pay the cost of transportation and digitization of selected materials.

In China, the project is led by Zhejiang University and Chinese Academy of Sciences, and is jointly implemented by Peking University, Tsinghua University, Fudan University, Nanjing University, Shanghai Jiaotong Uni, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Wuhan University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Zhongshan University, Jilin University, Sichun University and Beijing Normal University.

There will be the 1st International Conference on Universal Digitized Library held at Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, from 31 October to 2 November, 2005. ( Conference participants will exchange their experiences of digitized library construction, the MBP server will be open at the conference, and possibilities of further international cooperation will be discussed. You and your colleagues are warmly welcome to attend the conference.

Please contact Lian Ruan ( for more information on the project.

Originally posted 26 October 2005 by Haipeng Li on CALA Listserv (