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RU Libraries join the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC)

The University's entry into the Big Ten Conference for intercollegiate sports comes with a significant benefit to academic programs, through a partner collaboration called the Committee on Institutional Cooperation, the CIC, composed of the Big Ten institutions plus the University of Chicago. Within the CIC there is a very active Center for Library Initiatives. The Center focuses on three objectives - optimizing student and faculty access to the combined resources of our libraries; maximizing cost, time, and space savings; and supporting a collaborative environment where library staff work together to solve mutual problems. All of these library collaborative programs will have major benefits for Rutgers faculty and students.

In the area of collaborative collection development and consortial licensing, the CIC recently purchased the Elsevier E-books collections for 2008, 2009, and 2010. As a result, libraries and patrons of CIC libraries will be able to access over 1,300 titles across 18 science, technical, and medical subject areas. The CIC has also acquired 2,200 online books from Wiley-Blackwell that span 2007-2009 in the sciences, business and social sciences, and the entire English language e-book output from Springer from 2005-2010. Purchases were made at reduced, consortial pricing, and are available to all CIC members. We expect to acquire many of our digital collections through the CIC benefiting from the consortial pricing.

The CIC was a founding member of the HathiTrust, a major digital library initiative undertaken by Google in 2007 to scan 10 million items of the 78 million owned by the CIC member libraries. Since then Google and members have contributed more materials from their collections that are accessible to each member's community for research, textual analysis and data mining. This should be a boon to our digital humanities scholars as well as to many other disciplines.

As part of their mutual commitment to efficient ongoing access to scholarly information, the CIC libraries agreed to fund a shared repository of print journal back files. The repository provides a preservation function that allows other members to weed print from their collections, using the vacated space for other more valuable uses, and relying on the repository should a print copy be needed. The repository is located on the Indiana University campus, and the goal of phase one is to store 250,000 volumes. This will be extremely valuable to Rutgers as we address new and important space needs in all our libraries and look to the CIC shared repository to be our print preservation library.

These are but a few of the significant library collaborations that result in benefits for Rutgers faculty and students. There is more to come!

Posted April 18, 2013