Course:LIBR562/S2012/Group3/Cook Islands

From UBC Wiki

Named after Captain Cook the Cook Islands are currently self-goverend with free association with New Zealand, the Cook Islanders are also citizens of New Zealand. The climate of the Islands is tropical oceanic with accompanying seasonal typhoons. Most of the Cook Islanders are Cook Island Maori (87.7%) and the main languages are English, also the official language, and Maori. The population is estimated at 10,777 and is 95% literate.[1]

Featured Library


The Cook Islands Library and Museum

This library is the islands' more busy and visited library.[2] The library is located in the capital city of Rarotonga. It houses the Islands' most extensive collection of rare books and museum artifacts.[3] You can visit their blog with information about upcoming exhibitions at The Cook Islands Museum & Library blog.

Preservation Concerns

The Cook Islands' sustainable development plan only mentions cyclones as a concern, in terms of natural disasters, even as they remain concerned about preservation in a tropical climate.[4] However, they also mention climate change and other man made disaster has being concerns.[5]


In terms of their preparedness, the Cook Islands state that

This will involve the strength- ening of infrastructure and the safeguarding of essential services, as well as the strengthening of economic development and livelihood systems in key sectors such as agriculture (food security), health, fisheries, biodiversity conservation and tourism. With regard to infrastructure, we will need to climate-proof our harbours and airports, promote integrated coastal management (ICM), strengthen long-term water security for all islands, and address the risks associated with energy transportation and supply.[6]


The government of the Cook Islands established the National Library in October 1992, becoming fully operational in April 1993. It functions primarily as a national library, offering a Pacific Collection intended as a reference resource.[7] Related to this purpose, the National Library is being merged with the National Archives; the National Archives were originally established in 1974 by the Cook Islands’ first premier, Albert Henry.[8] Legislation from 1984, the Public Records Act, formalized the government’s responsibility to the Archives by creating a process for the transfer of all government documents to the Archivist, who has the authority over the administration of all records.[9] While the National Library presently serves as a public lending library, they indicate that this service will likely be discontinued in order to focus on building the Archives and reference services. Both the National Library and the Archives are the responsibility of the Ministry of Cultural Development.


  1. CIA World Fact Book.
  2. Pat Kittelson. No library Is An Island: Libraries in Rarotonga, Cook Islands. International Leads. 2003;17:1.
  3. Cook Islands Library & Museum Society. 2007. "About the Library and the Museum." Posted December 17.
  4. Wright-Koteka, Elizabeth. 2011. [| The Cook Islands: National Sustainable Development Plan 2011-2015]. Office of the Prime Minister, 33.
  5. ibid.
  6. Wright-Koteka, Elizabeth. 2011. [| The Cook Islands: National Sustainable Development Plan 2011-2015]. Office of the Prime Minister, 34.
  7. Ministry of Cultural Development. Cook Islands National Library. Retrieved Mary 28, 2012.
  8. Ministry of Cultural Development. (Cook Islands) National Archives. Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  9. ibid.