Doshisha Academy (Eigakko), the predecessor of The Doshisha, was founded in 1875 by Joseph Hardy Neesima. The following year, Neesima made his personal book collection available for reference and loan to students and teachers at the reading room of the Academy. This was the start of Doshisha University Library. Through the two previous generations of library buildings, Shojakukan (current Yushukan) and Keimeikan, Doshisha University Library was expanded to become the current Imadegawa Library (established in 1973) on the Imadegawa Campus and the Learned Memorial Library (established in 1986) on the Kyotanabe Campus, named in tribute to D. W. Learned, who taught at Doshisha for more than fifty years from the time it was known as Doshisha Academy.
The Academic Information Center, integrating the functions of the two libraries, the Computer Center and the Audio-Visual Room, was launched in 1991. It was later reorganized as the Library and Information Technology Center, combining the work of the libraries, information system facilities, multimedia facilities and clerical systems to meet the needs of the rapidly developing information age.
The web-based library services were significantly improved with the update of the academic information system in 2004 in response to the diversification of academic information and the considerable development of the information environment. This enabled Doshisha University Library to move toward its goal of upgrading the availability of both book and non-book materials. The Library offers various services and resources to support the education and research of the university’s faculty and students, which include an instructional workshop on how to best use the library as part of the university’s introductory education for new students, as well as access to online research tools such as e-journals and the Academic Repository (a system for electronically collecting and storing research bulletins, academic papers, doctoral dissertations).
Doshisha University Library started to operate as an independent body in April 2009, and has been serving as the core center of academic information and resources on campus. With the aim of helping members of the Doshisha community to achieve excellent results in their education and research activities in the ever-changing information environment, the Library is committed to providing more high quality and effective services.