Minutes of November 29, 2010 Meeting

Agnew, Albin, Boyle, Devanas, Gaunt, Golbeck, Grassle, Izbicki, Masschaele, McGill, Novak, Pitts, Wasserman

Update on Library Collections

Tom Izbicki, Associate University Librarian for Collection Management and Development, updated the committee on directions for collection development, and discussed how we are addressing the loss of collections funds in the recent budget reduction. Because of the cut in state funds, we are buying books, CDs, and DVDs, on non-state funds. This is problematic because the phonothon funds have been down by 20% under the current economic climate. The focus currently is on managing the budget we do have as carefully as possible. We are eliminating print subscriptions where we have both print and electronic, and moving to electronic only. We are eliminating any duplication across the three campuses unless it is absolutely necessary. We are looking carefully at the contents of our large electronic packages (databases) for titles that we don't need. We are also examining our approval plan profiles to ensure we are getting exactly what we want and we have seen savings there; we are ceasing orders for monograph series and purchasing as needed. Some publishers are willing to negotiate pricing because in the economic climate they want our business; others are still holding pat. The highest increase we have seen is 5%, which is low by normal standards. We are interested in e-books, but pricing models vary.

A lively discussion followed related to e-books with Marlie talking about the Mellon grant in which Rutgers is engaged with several other university presses to establish an e-book publishing model. They are not yet ready to announce who they will use as the publisher. An RFP was posted to which 6 potential publishers responded. They expect to announce sometime in January. They hope that the pricing model will take into consideration what they have heard from librarians and users. Licensing may be temporary or permanent; there may be front and back list titles; books will be sorted into collections and there will be a single price for a collection. They hope to be digital rights management "light" and allow interlibrary loan, digital reserves, and downloads. About 20% of university presses have sent letters of interest. They will proceed in phases as they learn more and expand. Stage one will be sales to libraries. Committee members noted the importance of flexibility; the value of mark-up for searching across texts rather than just PDF format; purchase options and not just the subscription model; and ability to purchase customized collections or buy by the book.

The Libraries' Strategic Plan

Jeanne Boyle, Associate University Librarian for Planning and Organizational Research, outlined the planning process that the Libraries would use to update our current strategic plan that ends in 2011. The Librarian's Cabinet will oversee the process, and the new plan will cover the next 3-5 years. The plan will focus on users, even though internal operations will also need to change to deliver services. We will deeply engage library faculty and staff. We will vet the plan with stakeholders once a draft is completed, because we have already gathered a lot of user information for planning using a variety of tools. For example, a customer satisfaction survey appears randomly on our website. It indicates where we need to improve services. Many of our users provided valuable comments in addition to completing the survey check boxes. We have learned that the staff is highly rated; students like the Meebo live chat reference; facilities need improvement; students want quiet space; books in high demand are hard to get through recall; online journals are highly prized but we don't have everything people want. Our ethnographic research project also found valuable information for planning: everyone wants a single sign on for all services; students need help in identifying the right databases to use for their research; we should create different web spaces for different types of users; integrate better databases and delivery options; allow payment of fines and bills online; provide more comfortable chairs; expand chat reference hours. Our in-library use study rated the physical facilities. The top activities in the libraries are studying or working individually; using a library computer; borrowing or returning material; using a personal laptop; asking a librarian for assistance; having late hours.

The planning process itself will have seven stages: developing a vision, identifying goals and priorities, developing the plan, testing with stakeholders, aligning internal processes and piloting the changes, implementation of the plan, ongoing evaluation. We hope to begin the implementation in the fall semester.

Moving Into Data Preservation

Grace Agnew, Associate University Librarian for Digital Library Systems, spoke about the recent mandate from the National Science Foundation that all grant proposals as of January 2011 must have a data preservation component. VP Pazzani's office has contacted the Libraries in collaboration with other units to use our institutional repository as a preservation mechanism for data. The NSF mandate requires that all PI's have a data management plan in their proposal. Depending on the discipline or sub-discipline, there may be a specific repository already established in some areas. RUL will provide a venue for preservation and access for those who do not have a natural place to keep their data.

The Libraries are in a good position to provide this support, because our repository structure was created with flexibility for all information formats (text, video, audio, data, etc.) planned at the outset. We have a very robust data model that is events-based that allows all ancillary documents to be referenced and also preserved. We are already capable of handling most general data formats, but expect that there will be many idiosyncrasies. At present we can manage data, but we do not have an automatic ingest procedure into RUCore. That means that we will need to get the data from each faculty member and work with them on the metadata descriptions. Until we have an automatic ingest, data management will be a 2-part process. VP Pazzani will provide a "holding" place for faculty to put their data, and the Libraries will contact those faculty individually and work to move their data into the repository. The cost of data preservation may be built into the grant proposals, and we hope this will assist the Libraries in providing the needed staff support. The Libraries expect to do outreach to faculty on the service we can provide, from helping with a data preservation plan to preserving the data.

General Update on the Libraries

Gaunt noted that we are 30% into the $9.5 million fund raising goal for the capital campaign with a major focus on building the collections endowments. Other priorities are preservation and archiving, and renovating facilities. The first café in the Libraries to be built in the basement level of Alexander Library is now funded and plans are underway for construction. We will have a contest to name the café and hope to open in spring semester. We are working on a budget framework document to discuss with VP Furmanski that will make our budget allocation process more transparent. Because we are not a revenue-generating organization, not withstanding our fund-raising program, we would like to have something like the all-funds process customized for the Libraries.

URL: http://www.libraries.rutgers.edu/rul/staff/groups/rul_adv_com/minutes/ruladv_10_11_29.shtml
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