University Librarian's Cabinet: Minutes of the May 13, 2014 Meeting

Agnew, Boyle, Cohn, Fredenburg, Gaunt, Golden, Izbicki, Just, Kuchi, Mullen
Glazer, Wolff, Barbalace

University Librarian’s Report - Gaunt

Gaunt reported that there will be changes in the organization of the Chancellor’s office in New Brunswick with the addition of a VP for Finance and Budget for the campus. The position description of the Provost in New Brunswick is being written and will be posted internally for a faculty member at the Professor I or distinguished professor level. The position will focus primarily on faculty issues of recruitment, mentoring, promotion and tenure. The need for Provost positions for the campuses was written into the integration legislation.

The composition of the university Promotion Review Committee will now include the campus provost positions, and the campus Chancellors will no longer be on the PRC. VP Edwards will remain the university liaison to the AAU and the CIC.

There will be changes in the extent to which crime alerts will be distributed. The Clery laws require campuses to share crime reports that occur on campus and within a specified geographical distance. The university chose to expand that distance for the sake of reporting, but there has been feedback on the necessity to do so.

Student Services is reviewing the support that it provides to students through various units with the focus on organizational effectiveness and cohesiveness in a one stop shop for career and counseling support.

The VP for Research and Corporate Relations will be reorganizing the office to enhance services and support.

A new business portal for the website will provide a single point of entry for corporations wishing to do business with the university.

The patent policies of the legacy UMD and Rutgers will be aligned in a single policy.

Work on the university facilities master plan is moving ahead and the master plan should be presented in the Fall.

The Libraries Advisory Committee met in early May and among the topics discussed was potential budget reduction scenarios for next year. The committee was very supportive and proposed that they write a letter of library support, especially as it relates to the university strategic plan and goals.

Report on RUL Branding Survey Results – Barbalace, Glazer, Wolff

The team presented a PowerPoint on the goal of assessing student and faculty perceptions of the Libraries to consider a library brand that was last determined in 2007/8. While a response of 380 or more respondents would create a valid sample, more than 1,600 individuals responded within a month’s time frame, with an appropriate percentage of undergrads, grad students, and faculty. Asking deans and department chairs to distribute the survey is credited with the successful response rate. Participants were asked to select the top 10 adjectives they would apply to the Libraries from a list of 40. The adjectives were selected and tested on a student sample before being using the survey. Several of the top adjectives were useful, accessible, convenient, quiet, easy to use, organized, friendly, informative, essential, and safe. While there were slight variations among the three groups, the same adjectives remained in the top 10. Statements related to the Libraries were also offered for agreement or disagreement. The top statements were that RUL was an essential component of the academic experience; RUL provides the web-based services needed; RUL provides the resources I would expect a university library to provide; RU librarians and staff are friendly; and RUL provides the technology within the physical library space. The priorities vary among the sectors, but are still at the top of the chart. Responses can be identified by sector, including RBHS, if anyone wishes to see how they differ. We will do an executive summary of the results and share with the deans, as several asked to know the results. We will not create a logo as part of the branding process, but the team emphasized that we should be aware of how we are perceived and use the terminology as we publicize our work, or try to change perceptions if we feel we do not wish to be known this way. Gaunt thanked the team for its good work on this process.

Student Experience in the Research University: A Peek at Library Results – Boyle

The university has been surveying undergraduates in New Brunswick using the Student Experience in the Research University (SERU) survey since 2009. The purpose of the survey is to gather longitudinal information on the undergraduate experience in order to make improvements. A consortium of approximately 24 major universities are using the survey, and we can get comparative data. There are five library-related question on the survey that cover self rating of library research skills when you entered and currently; satisfaction level with the accessibility of library staff and availability of research materials overall and within your major; the importance of having access to a world-class library collection; and frequency of studying in the library. The responses can be viewed by school within the university and by major. Boyle asked about the value of the information, how it is displayed, and how it might be used. All agreed that it is useful, and we need both overall data, and date broken down by campus and school. Some displays were favored over others. All thanked Boyle for working with the data to present it in a useful format.

Faculty Positions Wish List from PlanCo - Mullen

Mullen described the process by which a wish list of potential new positions was created by the Planning and Coordinating Committee over the last year. She noted that we created such a list several years ago, and as of this year almost all those positions are now filled by current library faculty. We were able to fill them because we re-arranged responsibilities as vacancies occurred. Only one position was filled by a new line. We need to plan for the new roles and new needs, and use the list as opportunities occur. Planning and Coordinating Committee has not yet written position descriptions to outline what we perceive to be the responsibilities of each, but thought it would be a good time to share the titles with Cabinet for any feedback at this stage. Most of the discussion centered on not having the descriptions in hand in order to better understand the actual roles of the positions and thus the need. Additionally, there is always the pull between each librarian having some responsibilities in new areas, such as open access, or data management vs. a single position with those responsibilities. It was agreed that in some instances we may need a coordinator position to bring various activities together, such as digital projects. In other cases we may need someone as a leader in a new area. There was some discussion over librarian titles identifying a particular role; or that many librarians have multiple roles that can’t be defined in a single title. Many issues were identifies, and Cabinet suggested that the position descriptions be written and discussed in Planning and Coordinating, and then brought back to Cabinet for final review.

ARL Membership Meeting Debrief – Gaunt, Just

Both Gaunt and Just (in her role as an RLLF fellow) attended the recent ARL meeting. While the various committees met and discussed their topics, the focus of the general sessions was on the new ARL vision (not being called a strategic plan) for the future of research libraries to 2033, and how ARL will organize itself to assist research libraries to move into the future. A session on SHARE described progress in the ARL, AAU, APLU initiative to create an ecosystem for the repository and discovery of open access publications and data resulting from federal grants. The challenge is to create this system at scale. Libraries should be having conversations with CIOs and VPRs on this topic. The Working Groups are already deep in planning for the notification system that would inform all those involved in the process when something has been deposited that fulfills an obligation or interest. ARL announced that it would be releasing a web toolkit on accessibility at This is becoming a major issue on campuses as they seek to provide web and physical accessibility to disabled staff, students, and faculty.

The ARL vision exercise has taken a year of planning thus far. Envisioning the environment in which libraries will operate in 2033 and then determining our role is a challenge. The goal was to design a system of action to shape the future of research libraries. If we think about unbundling research libraries from single sites or single universities, then we can take on other roles and other partners. We can have several layers of interaction: individual users, the institution, networked institutions, and society. The vision for the research library is that it engages in knowledge creation in a community of practice with differing degrees of expertise from novice to expert. In 2033, the research library will have shifted from its role as a knowledge service provider within the university to become a collaborative partner within a rich and diverse learning and research ecosystem. There are many pieces in this process and several scenarios were posited that may take us there. Just and Gaunt volunteered to do a program after the faculty meeting in June to discuss further the framework and pieces of the vision.

Report on CNI and DPN Meetings – Gaunt

This topic was a holdover from the last Cabinet meeting and in the interim, both CNI and DPN have issued summaries of their meetings that are now on the websites of each organization. Gaunt suggested that Cabinet members review those for an excellent overview. She noted that one of the CNI breakouts was on open textbooks.


Fredenburg – attended a recent program sponsored by the university on the topic of accessibility; several library staff also attended. There are federal and state laws regarding physical and virtual accessibility for the physically impaired. They must have the same accessibility as those without impairments. There are issues related to websites, electronic resources, and library services that will need to be reviewed. We look forward to working with the university office on this topic.

Charlene Houser will be moving her office to the 3rd floor administrative suite to work with Abbey Baker as we look to reorganize our business practices to be more efficient and effective. There is no change in her reporting, and she will continue to provide support to the NB libraries.

Boyle – conducting a security audit in Newark; Boyle and some librarians and staff visited Drexel University recently to see their laptop kiosk; users can check out laptops to themselves at the kiosk; it has been extremely successful. Dana will be getting some future scholars at the library and Newark’s Academic Foundations wants the library to do an orientation for EOF students.

Agnew – Agnew and Mary Chute, NJ State Librarian will be co-presenting at the NJ State of Invention conference at Rutgers in late June; considering a possible collaborative grant to IMLS to create a portal that brings together all our related digital NJ projects, such as HealthyNJ, NJDH, NJEDL, etc. to demonstrate how we support NJ citizens.

Just – interviews for the final candidate for the Dana Director position is this week for Cabinet; interviews are also concluding for the final Access Services candidate.

Mullen – spoke at the recent Substance Abuse Librarians conference that was organized by the Alcohol Studies Library and ran for several days; noted the leadership of Judit Ward and the excellence of the Center for Alcohol Studies Library collection.

Cohn – with several librarians conducted a very successful workshop for research professionals and faculty that covered open access, RUcore, data managements, and topics relevant to the research process. RBHS strategic plan is moving quickly; submitted written reviews of several proposals for signature areas; there is funding for a feasibility student for a building that will connect to the current Smith Library and the School of Dentistry; interest in having space related to library operations in the new building to enhance services to RBHS.

Agenda setting – Digital Priorities

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