In cooperative cataloguing a group of independent libraries share the cataloguing work. Needham says that cooperative cataloguing refers to "a situation where a number of independent libraries share the work of producing a catalogue for their mutual benefit"
The aims and objectives of cooperative cataloguing are virtually the same as that of centralised cataloguing. Just as in the case of centralised cataloguing through cooperative cataloguing we can gain the following:
1) Better use of resources:
2) Standardization of cataloguing practices:
3) Economy in expenses:
4) Improving the quality of library services; and
5) Preparation of union catalogues with relative ease.
Cooperative cataloguing as an idea had its origins in the early eighteenth century. In 1850 William Desborough Cooley was thinking of 'Universal Catalogue' at public expense. By then C.C. Jewett had drawn up a plan for cooperative cataloguing for American libraries. Cooperative cataloguing, however, had found firm ground with the introduction of LC printed cards in 1901. The LC scheme can be viewed both as cooperative and centralised cataloguing. It is cooperative in the sense that it exchanges catalogue entries with other Marge libraries and builds up a comprehensive union catalogue at Washington.