Core Collection

In support of research, teaching, and learning at Harvard Kennedy School, Library & Knowledge Services collects and circulates current materials in traditional and new areas of scholarship. Subject areas collected at an instructional support and research level include: public administration; policy analysis; nonprofit sector policy and management; U.S. federal, state and local government; U.S. politics and elections; public finance; economic policy; economic development; international and sustainable development; environmental policy; energy and energy policy; international relations; international security; human rights; judgment and decision making; public leadership; urban policy; social policy; political and professional ethics; science and technology policy; media studies and journalism.

Our print collection is located on the ground floor of the Littauer Building and at the Harvard Depository. It is searchable in HOLLIS+ and is supplemented by collections at the University’s other libraries as well, as by electronic resources available at E-Research @ Harvard Libraries.

For information about accessing the collections, please see our access & accessibility guidelines.

Data and Databases

We provide access to hundreds of databases focused on our subject areas, and license data sets that support analysis of our subject areas. To learn more about these resources, please consult our Data Resources for HKS Affiliates research guide or contact a research librarian


We subscribe to a selection of current affairs journals and magazines in print for browsing and reading in the library. We also provide access to thousands of scholarly electronic journals available at E-Journals @ Harvard Libraries.


We provide a robust reserves service, providing access to digital course materials, books, videos, streaming services in support of the curriculum.

Dissertations and Student Papers

HKS doctoral dissertations along with Policy Analysis Exercises (PAEs) and Second Year Policy Analysis Papers (SYPAs) are collected in print. Dissertations from 1990 onward are also available online in Dissertations and Theses Full-Text.


Our video collection consists primarily of commercially produced films and documentaries on topics related to public policy and global affairs.


Library & Knowledge Services collects and preserves select administrative, curricular, and scholarly output of the Harvard Kennedy School.


We welcome recommendations for additions to the library’s book, journal, or database collections.