Conceived in 1993 by George Strawn (National Science Foundation), Nancy L. Eaton (Iowa State University), and Pamela Andre (National Agricultural Library), AgNIC started as an idea for how libraries and other organizations could use the emerging Internet to share information across the broad agricultural community.

In 1995, a group of four academic libraries, Iowa State University, Cornell University, University of Arizona, and the University of Nebraska, joined the National Agricultural Library to formally launch the Agriculture Network Information Center (AgNIC).  From the beginning, the partners envisioned a voluntary alliance, cooperating with a minimum of formal structure, with the goal of improving access to reliable agricultural information.

For the first decade, partner institutions leveraged local subject expertise to build and curate topical websites that covered vertical segments of agricultural information.   As online information expanded, AgNIC partners moved beyond website curation, and developed an online database to offer users a new tool to more efficiently search the web for agricultural resources.  Further developments in web services, institutional repositories, and portal technologies enabled deployment of the AgNIC Search, an innovative effort that was retired in 2013.

Also in 2013, AgNIC partners voted to change the “C” from ‘Center’ to ‘Collaborative’ to signal a broader vision for a group ready to collaborate on a wider range of goals and interests.   Moving forward, this long-term partnership provides an established framework for libraries and other organizations to collaborate nationally, and internationally, on projects that promote access to agricultural information and data.

AgNIC: Selected Readings

  1. Austin, Damon, Melanie Gardner, and Vernon Chapman. 2009. “Innovative applications towards resolving challenges in harvesting shared metadata.” International Association of Technological University Libraries (IATUL) in Lueven, Belgium June 4, 2009.
  2. Britton, Constance J., Allison V. Level, and Melanie A. Gardner. 2013. “Crowdsourcing: Divide the Work and Share the Success.” Library Hi Tech News 30 (4):1-5. doi: 10.1108/LHTN-03-2013-0017 . http://hdl.handle.net/1811/55688
  3. Easton, Nancy L.2002. “History of AgNIC.”  ARL: A Bimonthly Report on Research Library Issues & Actions. 223 (August): 5-7. (within Garner, et. al. article).
  4. Farmer, Diana, and Yongli Zhou. 2009. “Overcoming the Fear Factor: Creating a Dynamic Web Site.” Journal of Agricultural & Food Information 10 (3):198-229. doi: 10.1080/10496500903025244.
  5. Finch, Lori, and Melanie Gardner. 2009. “You say ‘palta’ I say ‘aguacate’ and they say ‘avocado’ Diversity in agricultural terminology of the Americas.” ComunIICA, 5th Year: May-August 2009.
  6. Frierson, Eleanor G., Melanie Gardner, Susan McCarthy, and Peggy J. Blake. 2003. “Collaborative Development of Agricultural Information Services at the National Agricultural Library of the United States.” Science & Technology Libraries 24 (1-2):5-20. doi: 10.1300/J122v24n01_02.
  7. Gagnon, Stuart, Alesia McManus, and Beth Roberts. 2004. “Libraries and Out-Reach: Serving the World Around Us. University of Maryland AgNIC Gateway: Partnering to Provide Agricultural Biotechnology Information.” Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship (39). doi:10.5062/F4SQ8XCM; http://www.istl.org/04-winter/article1.html
  8. Gardner, Melanie A. 2007. “Successful Partnerships That Work,” Melanie A. Gardner. IAALD Quarterly Bulletin, vol. LII, no. 3 / 4.
  9. Gardner, Melanie A., and Richard Thompson. 1998. “AgNIC: Synergistic Model for Electronic Access to Distributed Resources.” In Proceedings:  First International Conference on Geospatial Information in Agriculture and Forestry, Orlando, Florida, June 1-3, 1998
  10. Gardner, Melanie, Jean Gilbertson, and Barbara Hutchinson. 2002. “Partnering for Improved Access to Agricultural Information: The Agriculture Network Information Center (AgNIC) Initiative.” ARL: A Bimonthly Report on Research Library Issues & Actions. 223 (August): 5–10.
  11. Greider, Antoinette Paris, and Barbara S. Hutchinson. 2017. “The United States Agricultural Information Network: Accomplishments through Strategic Collaboration.” Library Trends 65 (3):253-278. doi: 10.1353/lib.2017.0001; https://uknowledge.uky.edu/libraries_facpub/283/
  12. Heatley, Randall, and Melanie Gardner. 2003. “Opportunities for Collaboration to Develop a Digital Land-Grant Information System.” Journal of Agricultural & Food Information 5 (1):35-42. doi: 10.1300/J108v05n01_06.
  13. Henzel, Jerry, Barbara S. Hutchinson, and Anne Thwaits. 2006. “Using Web Services to Promote Library-Extension Collaboration.” Library Hi Tech 24 (1):126-141. doi: 10.1108/07378830610652158.
  14. Johns, Erica M., and Cynthia Parr. 2019. “The AgNIC Data Working Group: University Collaboration with the National Agricultural Library.” Research Library Issues (298):41-45. doi: 10.29242/rli.298.5.
  15. Jones, Douglas, George Ruyle, and Barbara Hutchinson. 2004. “Building a Collaborative AgNIC Site as an Outreach Model: Rangelands of the Western U.S.” The Reference Librarian 39 (82):125-140. doi: 10.1300/J120v39n82_08.
  16. Lektzian, Stacy, and Julia Perez. 2006. “Nature’s Bounty: From Asparagus to Maple Syrup: An Analysis of AgNIC Questions Received by the Michigan State University Library January 2002-March 2005.” Journal of Agricultural & Food Information 7 (2-3):109-123. doi: 10.1300/J108v07n02_09.
  17. Matthaus, Bertrand. 1998. “Using Information Systems of the Internet in the Field of Food and Nutrition Sciences.” Deutsche Lebensmittel-Rundschau 94 (8):256-262.
  18. McMullen, Susan. (2000), “Agriculture Network Information Center.” Electronic Resources Review 4(11): 131-132. doi.org/10.1108/err.2000.
  19. Moberly, Heather K., and Melanie. A. Gardner. 2000. “Creating Distributed Information Access: The Agriculture Network Information Center (AgNIC).” Technical Services Quarterly 17 (3):33-46.
  20. “New on the Net.” 1995. The Electronic Library 13 (6), 570-575. doi: 10.1108/eb045432
  21. Nowick, Elaine, and Melanie A. Gardner. 2002. “Getting It Out There: A Cooperative Agricultural Network for Information Sharing.” Technical Services Quarterly, 19:3, 41-49, DOI: 10.1300/J124v19n03_03
  22. Olsen, Livia, Julie Kelly, and Noël Kopriva. 2017. “The Agriculture Network Information Collaborative (AgNIC): Building on the Past, Looking to the Future.” Library Trends 65 (3):279-292. doi: 10.1353/lib.2017.0002; http://hdl.handle.net/2142/96180
  23. Pfander, Jeanne L. 2002. “Meeting Rangeland Information Needs Through a Web-Based Reference Service: The Arizona AgNIC Experience.” Journal of Agricultural & Food Information 4 (2):33-41. doi: 10.1300/J108v04n02_03.
  24. Pfander, Jeanne L., Yan Han, Lindsay Wyatt, Marianne Stowell Bracke. 2006. “Full-Text Online Access to Society for Range Management Journals” Rangelands, 28(1):46-48 (2006). https://doi.org/10.2111/1551-501X(2006)28.1[46:FOATSF]2.0.CO;2 ; https://doi.org/10.2458/azu_rangelands_v28i1_pfander
  25. Salisbury, Lutishoor. 2007. “Enhancing Rice Content in AgNIC: Methodology for Evidence-Based Identification of Resources.” Journal of Agricultural & Food Information 8 (2):49-56. doi: 10.1300/J108v08n02_06.
  26. Salisbury, Lutishoor, and Jeremy J. Smith. 2014. “Building the AgNIC Resource Database Using Semi-Automatic Indexing of Material.” Journal of Agricultural & Food Information 15 (3):159-176. doi: 10.1080/10496505.2014.919805.
  27. Scholl, J. (2014). “One Hundred Years of 4-H Research.” Reclaiming Children and Youth, 23( 3): 53-55.
  28. Thompson, R. E. 1996. “The Agricultural Network Information Centre (AgNIC) concept.” Agricultural Libraries and Information Notes 22 (1-3):10-13.
  29. Watson, Renae J., Allison V. Level & Beth Oehlerts. (2019). Ten Years and Counting: Preserving and Sharing Colorado’s Agricultural History Online, Journal of Agricultural & Food Information, 20:3, 206-219, DOI: 10.1080/10496505.2019.1576529
  30. Wells, Amy Tracy, Susan Calcari, and Travis Koplow. 1999. The amazing Internet challenge: how leading projects use library skills to organize the Web. Chicago: American Library Association.
  31. Zumalt, Joseph R. 2003. “A Primer on Agricultural Communications for Student, Librarians and Researchers.” Journal of Agricultural & Food Information 5 (1):25-33. doi: 10.1300/J108v05n01_05.