Minutes of April 30, 2014 Meeting

Axelrod, Boyle, Cohn (guest), Devanas, Fishman, Gaunt, Golbeck, Masschaele, McGill, Morrell, Mullen(guest), Morrell, Novak, Norris, Otto (guest), Walker, Wasserman, Wieder

Budget Update

Gaunt reported that the Libraries wer4e asked to model three budget reduction scenarios for the upcoming year: 4%, 2%, and 1.25%. Any of these cuts would be significant for the Libraries. We have three areas where we can make reductions: salaries, operations, and collections. In addition to the reduction scenarios we need and additional $750K to cover the costs of merging subscriptions to make all databases available to both universities, approximately $350K is needed to cover the cost of the CIC, and increased salaries are approximately $500k. Adding these costs onto the costs adds $1.6M. Needless to say the 4% scenario would be significant. The models include closing libraries, eliminating more than 20 positions, and cutting collections severely. Because our operating budget is only about 7% of our total budget, there is little to cut. We would have to cut a significant number of positions to come up with $1M. As a result, collections will of necessity need to be reduced. Selectors are now discussing targets based on use and current priorities in each discipline. We are hopeful that the major reduction of 4% is not implemented, but we are not likely to know before September. We do not compare favorably with our CIC peers which does not bode well for the future as it is difficult to make up lost revenue. McGill asked if it would be useful to have a letter from the Advisory Committee to the Chancellor requesting that the Libraries budget be reviewed in light of the University's Strategic Plan and aspirations and in comparison to our peers. The committee agreed, and McGill would draft and solicit signatures.

Integration of the Health Sciences Libraries and RBHS Strategic Plans

Gaunt introduced Judy Cohn who is now the Director of the Health Sciences Libraries within the Rutgers Library system. She described the integration of the 2 Health Sciences Libraries (Smith in Newark, and RWJ in the RWJ Hospital) noting that all services are being merged as far as possible. Most were done at the time of integrations, but a few are being completed. Now that the collections are merged, and services are in process, she plans to do a post integration survey with IRB approval to assess the impact of the integration on RBHS faculty and students, and to make adjustments if the data shows it is needed. She noted that the Health Sciences librarians were engaged in the RBHS strategic plan process on some committees, but also assisted the Chancellor in identifying strategic themes by searching the literature for RU faculty publications in the potential strategic areas. The Libraries will be identifying areas where their expertise can support the plan once completed. There are many areas in the integration that will be explored, including where print journals should reside if they are duplicated in the system; where physical space can be recouped for other pressing service needs; are there areas within the CIC for collaboration; will the RUL web scale discovery software plans work equally well for the health sciences.

Implementation Plans for Open Access

Mullen and Otto described the progress made on planning for the implementation of the open access policy. The Task Force has been working on educational programs, talking to departments and faculty groups about open access. They developed a simple and straightforward handout that explains what our policy is all about, what it means to the faculty, who has been involved, when it takes effect, and general information resources. The soft landing is in January 2015 with full implementation in Fall 2015. A lot of work is going into the design of the repository interface for open access to make it simple and easy to deposit. The group is looking at other sites and taking the best practices aspects from each. They are looking at metrics, and the possibility of getting ORCID identifiers for graduate students and the faculty. They want the RU policy and website to be the best in breed, and feel that the implementation time to plan has allowed the task force to learn from others and develop something unique.

Open Textbooks

Gaunt discussed a request from VP Edwards to look into the topic of open textbooks at the requests of several student groups. Right now there is no common approach among the CIC institutions with none of them doing a lot in this area. A faculty member at Minnesota has been developing a list of currently available open access textbooks and has asked faculty to post reviews of these so that others can determine if they would be of use to them. It may come up in the CIC directors agenda at a future meeting. Gaunt noted that the Libraries could develop and host open textbooks if there was interest, but for the work involved it seemed more logical to do a textbook that reached a lot of students in order to realize significant savings. So far there is one faculty in engineering whose book has gone out of print who is willing to engage with us. Some noted that the value of doing an open textbook is the use of video and other media, which oulw make its development more complicated. There are websites that list open educational resources (OER) and perhaps linking to them would be beneficial. There needs to be incentives for faculty to engage in developing such texts. Gaunt noted that some institutions do provide funds for open access books. Novak described a project with Barnes and Noble on e-texts resources where students will have access to publications at very low costs. Also noted was OIRT's annual faculty day as a possibility for engagement.

Update on Libraries Strategic Plan

Jeanne Boyle, who has shepherded the development of the Libraries new strategic plan, described the process that the Libraries used for its plan and where we are in the process. In November the Libraries Cabinet developed strategic activities mapping them against the university temple template and our current plan. The various units of the Libraries then began a brainstorming and discussion process to consider these activities, and to surface and vet other areas in sync with university plans. Cabinet combined all input into one document and reconsidered the broad goals. In the Spring the proposed strategic activities were distributed to everyone for prioritization. Cabinet is discussing the recommended priorities within a resources framework. The final plan will be confirmed and distributed by the June target date. Following the development of the main plan, annual activities will be developed by all units and groups that support the strategic plan, and assessment measures will also be developed. These will likely be finalized in the Fall. We have tried to use the university plan as a guide, and included anything that was learned about the individual campus plans. The timing, however, made that difficult as all units were working simultaneously. None the less, we are confident that our goals and activities are broad enough to support the units.

URL: http://www.libraries.rutgers.edu/rul/staff/groups/rul_adv_com/minutes/ruladv_14_04_30.shtml
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