NB Libraries Director's Annual Report, 2002-2003

August 15, 2003

Prepared By
Francoise S. Puniello
Acting Director


Ryoko Toyama


The main challenge this year was keeping all operations functioning given the number of lost operating lines resulting from the early retirement incentives (ERI) program of 2002/03. The staff and library faculty of the New Brunswick Libraries (NBL) worked hard to meet user needs. Under the pressure of a shortage of our traditional work force, while at the same time offering new user services, this year more initiatives and innovations were born in NBL, and many necessary changes took place on all fronts. Effective communication within and between functional teams and the staff's demonstrated on-the-job learning ability - an NBL tradition - have enabled everyone to plan and stratify steps to achieve the goals. In such a challenging time, the New Brunswick Libraries have made remarkable accomplishments and filled vacated position with new sets of expertise whenever recruitment was possible. This major turnover of human resources within a short period was another test for the functional team-based organizational framework that was initiated in 1996 by the New Brunswick Reorganization Committee. NBL, this constantly evolving organization, has passed another test of time.

Ryoko Toyama, New Brunswick Library Director retired May 30th after 12 years of exemplary service. During her tenure the New Brunswick Libraries were reorganized into a unified system which has enabled the formation of teams across all functions in the organization. These teams have permitted cross training and redundancies which have served us well as staff are shifted to meet critical needs across the campus. Ms. Toyama was instrumental in the creating, planning, and fund-raising for the Scholarly Communications Center in the Alexander Library. This facility has become a model how librarians work in partnerships with faculty and other bodies in the creation of information. This center has been used as model for other facilities in academic libraries. Also during her tenure several renovation projects were undertaken including the Douglass Library and the Annex. The staff and faculty of the New Brunswick Libraries wish her well as she commences a new phase of her life. Francoise Puniello was appointed Acting Director.

As is fully documented in the many attached reports, even with the loss of lines, cut in funds, and an increase in workload, the faculty and staff of the New Brunswick Libraries have been incredibly productive and creative. They have fully participated in the continuing development of the Rutgers University Libraries digital library goals. In the new year, with further line and funding cuts ahead of us, they will again rise to the challenge and do their best to serve the constituents of the New Brunswick Libraries under such trying circumstances.. They are to be applauded for their work and public service dedication.


Digital Initiatives

Scholarly Communications Center

The most significant work being accomplished within the Scholarly Communications Center (SCC) in FY 2002/03 is its core involvement in the development of RUL's Digital Library Initiative (DLI). The Digital Architecture and Infrastructure Working Group (DAWG) was launched in July 2002 with Ron Jantz (chair) and three SCC staff members. Initiatives underway include the development of requirements and architecture for a digital library repository and the evaluation and selection of a mass storage subsystem.

New Jersey Digital Highway (formerly Statewide Digitization Task Force) initiated by the NJ State Library connects directly to the RUL DLI. SCC, represented by Ron Jantz and Linda Langschied, chair of the Website/Portal Working Group, will assume a major role, particularly if an Institute for Museum and Libraries Studies grant is funded. Langschied is also PI for the grant project, entitled: "The Changing Face of New Jersey-the Immigration Experience from Earliest Times to the Present." Grace Agnew, Rutgers University Associate University Librarian for Digital Library Systems initiated and led this effort.

The SCC deployed a "Digital Preservation Lab" (DPL) as a new facility, with the development of a panoply of services. ELF funds permitted the acquisition of an important high-end camera for both analog and digital preservation. The DPL also acquired a large format sheet-fed scanner networked to a large-format printer.

Listed below are some of the many projects that the SCC has been involved in. Please see SCC and individual librarians' reports for a full listing.

PCSC (Pragmatic Case Studies in Psychotherapy) - online electronic journal developed by Professor Dan Fsihman (GSAAP) with SCC technology platform development by Ron Jantz; programming by Jeffrey Triggs. The platform development is nearly complete, and provides the generic structure for RUL to publish open-access e-journals. Work is coordinated through RUL's Scholarly Communication Committee.

At CETH (Center for Electronic Text in Humanities) under the direction of the Humanities Digital Initiatives Librarian, Brian Hancock, development of the Online Concordance to the Works of Caesar continued. Der Biedermann and Bailey's Dictionary were added to the every growing Spectator project of which users have been increasing among serious scholars across countries. The humanities digital initiatives librarian continued to work on Latin text section on Carrie, a full-text database, at the University of Kansas: http://www.ukasas.edu/carrier/stacks/classical_latin_main.html
This has raised the visibility of CETH and placed RUL in the forefront of humanities computing among research libraries.

Beginning this year, the science digital initiatives librarian, Karen Wenk, participates in the project: New Jersey Environmental Digital Library (NJEDL) as co-principal investigator. http://njedl.rutgers.edu/njdlib/
The impact of her participation is expansion of the NJEDL to increase pure science resources.

Humanities and Sciences Digital Initiatives Librarians continued to participate in the project: Electronic Journal of Boundary Elements (EJBE). They are co-digital publishers of this journal. http://tabula.rutgers.edu/EJBE/ EJBE is a prototype electronic publication in RU, a valuable pilot for the future scholarly communication.

The Science Digital Initiatives Librarian is upgrading the web interface of Retractions Database. http://www.scc.rutgers.edu/retractions/. With more publicity, this database will serve well as a useful tool for librarians and researchers. She is also co-digital publisher of the electronic Journal of Boundary Elements (EJBE). http://tabula.rutgers.edu/EJBE.

The World's Peoples platform was completed and made publicly available by the Social Sciences Data librarian, Ron Jantz. There were about 30 downloads of the platform in January and an article describing the project was published in the February, 2003 Syllabus (by R.Bell and R. Jantz). http://www.scc.rutgers.edu/worldpeoples.

The online Polish General Social Survey with integrated thesaurus and real-time statistics was finished in August 2002 under the direction of the Data librarian in partnership with Ferris Olin. The SCC has received permission from ICPSR to make the study available.

Professor Rudy Bell's course in the history and culture of Italy's Peoples was offered at the University of Colorado where he was a visiting professor in the Fall, 2002. The Italy's Peoples website and database available on the SCC server supported this well-attended course.

A networked data workstation was established in the Alexander Library's reference area, providing access to some of the more frequently used data resources such as World Development Indicators and the Census products from Geolytics.

A prototype of an online version of Rutgers Magazine was initiated and is operational through the work of SCC staff. This project is ready to move forward, pending funding.

The Eagleton director and university librarian signed an agreement for RUL to archive Eagleton Public Opinion polls. The SCC is now the official archive of the Eagleton polls.

Humanities and Social Sciences Digital Initiatives Librarians continued to enhance the REALITI prototype digital preservation framework. Three students from SCILS participated in the process of importing a variety of documents (maps, broadsides, books) and to define preservation metadata for each item as independent study. While the project moved forward, SCC provided a valuable educational platform with guidance to SCILS students.

The SCC continued to provide technology support for various RUL-wide initiatives. An Art Library survey and a Vale survey were launched on the SCC server. A student employee at SCC developed an extensive statistics collecting and reporting website mechanism.

Other Digital Projects

NBL saw the development of as Social Science Journals Database Search engine (Soc-dbase) by Triveni Kuchi. http://digital-projects.rutgers.edu/socsearch

Information Services and Instructional Support

During this reporting period, over 27,000 reference and research queries were answered and close to 25,000 directional questions were answered by librarians, staff and Information Assistants. Additionally librarians provided well over 2,800 individual and advanced research consultations away from the reference desk. Altogether approximately 50,500 contacts were made between the New Brunswick+ information services librarians, staff and students, and the public.

A total of 572 class sessions (reaching a total of 11, 667 students) were taught during AY 2002-2003 including summer sessions. Approximately 85 % of the instruction sessions were for undergraduate students. These numbers are preliminary as of this reporting. For more comprehensive data and analyses on NBL instruction activities, please see RUL Instructional Services annual report.

One of the goals of the FY 2001-2002 for ISSG was to refine the data collection for information/reference/research/ instructional services so that trends and needs of these activities across NBL can be identified, and effective service programs can be designed and coordinated. The members of the ISSG are extremely pleased to complete the two separate web-based online forms for instruction and reference statistics that will streamline the process of data collection and acknowledge the outstanding leadership of S. Bartz for her efforts to complete and coordinate this project and acknowledge the technical support of the SCC staff.

While much collective work has been done in this area, data gathering and extensive analysis by the RUL Instruction Group are still in progress. To assist the RUL Instruction Group, New Brunswick Libraries' ISSG (Information Services Steering Committee) introduced a web-based data gathering system, http://www.scc.rutgers.edu/bi_stats. Effective July 1, 2004, this will collect necessary data and help produce a meaningful accountability report for NBL.


New Brunswick Libraries's share of the total collection was $3.27 million, up by $14,000 over the proceeding year. Over the proceeding six years NBL's share of total Rutgers University Libraries collection budget has declined from a peak of 68% in 1998 to 42% in 2003. This is due primarily to the rapid growth of electronic resources and the switch from print journals to e-journals whose costs are shifted to central funds. Concomitantly Central's funs grew from $738,000 to $3.5 million, an increase of 374%. Non state funds were down $165,000 or 14.8% from the previous year due to lower receipts from donors and reduced returns on investments of endowments.

Special gifts

Received the complete set of the Srimad Bhagavatam (25 vols.) and various texts on Hinduism such as Readings in Vedic Literature and the Teachings of Lord Caitanya (30 vols.) from W. Henry Walthall, Trustee Veda/Prabhupada Rasamrita Trust. A valuable addition to RUL collections.

Received the Belarusian book collection of Jan Zaprudnik with an accompanying monetary gift for processing costs. The press release announcing the gift and our new collecting focus in Belarusian studies was disseminated via the Belarusian press and in library science publications.

Received the signed license agreement from the editor of Vreme, the Serbian newspaper based in Belgrade, and had the passwording removed from the text at http://www.scc.rutgers.edu/serbian_digest/. Cataloging, web linking, and a public announcement are pending.

The Japanese language collection of the East Asian Library was enhanced by two significant donations: over 250 volumes of out-of-print monographs in Japanese literature and Art of late Professor Sacheim, and over 600 volumes of history and government policies covering the post-WWII period from the Consulate General of Japan in NY.

Access/Collection Services

The merger of the Access Services department and the Collection Services departments officially occurred June 1. Henceforth the new department will be called the Access/Collection Services Department. Detailed analysis of workflow, distribution of assignments and internal realignments, and the first phase of cross training will be completed in spring 2004. The merger will provide cohesive and more timely support for NBL-wide projects such as collection rationalization, systematic shelfreading across NBL buildings, and long awaited basic preservation work.

RUL joined the Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc. (PALCI) in February 2003 on a trial basis. Although the E-Z Borrow service is not specific to the New Brunswick Libraries, Access Services was asked to create the documentation on policy and procedures. It was approved by Central Access Services and circulated to all Rutgers University Libraries. Successfully implementing this new service into the daily routine meant not only training staff, but also integrating it into public interactions in order to educate the users.

Successful implementation of the User Initiated Holds service started in August 2002. This new service has increased the speed of request fo RUL items, as patrons are now able to directly place holds on items via IRIS rather than have all requests filtered by library staff. Documentation on policy and procedures has been completed and circulated by Access Services.

Staff training continues to be a priority of the department. New digital technologies and electronic methods of delivering services to Rutgers community have demanded professional growth from the Access Services staff. New staff are cross trained by all the functional groups to ensure flexibility in providing service and to foster a fuller understanding of the complex environment in which the department has evolved.

The Access Services Open House held in the summer of 2002 was a success with many compliments received.

The Libraries Annex renovation was finished. While closed to the public, delivery of the services to the users was successfully achieved. The Annex continues to grow as a valuable component of RUL. Since September 2002, 3,429 items have been moved to this location.

Access Services were active participants in Ask-A-Librarian, our online reference service. In fact they answered 65-70% of the over 12,000 electronically submitted questions this past year.

In the technical services area a highlight was the completion of the Douglass Rationalization Project which completed the withdrawal of over 19,513 titles and the transfer of over 12,450 titles to RU libraries in a years time. The project marked the beginning of a new process for analyzing collections and the actions that follow. It was a change of approach of weeding for Rutgers Libraries.

The OPAC was used as an automated shelflist to analyze and annotate for future actions. The savings of time and labor were exceptional and the model is being used for all subsequent weeding projects at Rutgers Libraries. Another highlight was the creation of MARC holding records for all active subscriptions for the New Brunswick Libraries for both current and bound holdings.

The year was also marked by massive record clean-ups resulting from combined serial receiving for New Brunswick Libraries in two locations.

Multimedia Services

Media Center

Use statistics for the Media Center and for the bookings that the Media Center facilitates for all RUL collections have changed considerably over the last three years.

Reference queries have gone from 2,240 in 2001 to @14,000 in 2003. [Only sampling data is available for 03.] Directional transactions have declined in a similar manner from 7,011 in 2001 to @1,000 in 2003. These changes reflect increased awareness of the difference between a directional and reference query, and increased ability of the staff to handle questions about subject access. Since the staff is no longer focused on the delivery of equipment, they have more time to acquire knowledge of the collections and users' needs.

The Streaming Audio Reserves Pilot, begun in Fall 2001 in collaboration with Systems, continued in New Brunswick. This pilot has been largely carried out by Jan Reinhart; he also successfully marketed the service to faculty outside the Music Department. The technical operation takes place in the Music Library, and primary users are music faculty, though approximately 1/3 are from other NB departments. 1106 files have been streamed, and the number of files per course ranges from 2 to 145. Last school year 587 files were streamed as reserves for 15 courses. This is slightly more than the inaugural year totals of 507 for 15 courses.

The Reserves operation has increased significantly during this period from 242 transactions in 2002 to 1,758 in 2003 for 20 courses. Considering the additional access provided by Mediavision (304 actual showings of 71 titles for 19 courses), and increased use of Music Media as a location of media reserves (320 reserve transactions for 16 non-music courses), this is a remarkable increase.

Mediavision cablecasts became operational as of September 2002 by the Media Center and RU-TV. For the Spring semester Mediavision cable cast 71 titles (304 actual showings) for 19 courses, five of which had numerous sections. A survey of students confirmed that the optimum use of Mediavision is by undergraduates living in residence halls.

A film preservation project has been undertaken. A critical project as our films had not been cared for on a regular basis for a number or years. A total of 473 hours of voucher and student assistants at a cost of $5,376 . Preservation supplies came to $1400. Approximately three quarters of the collection has been inspected with 400 reels remaining. 100 reels have been repaired. Only a small number of reels have a so serious case of vinegar syndrome that they have must be segregated. Ongoing.

New Service Enhancements

In collaboration with the American Hungarian Foundation (AHF) and NBL Access Services, the world history librarian facilitated the establishment of Rutgers Request and ILL services for books in the Library of the AHF.

In collaboration with Medieval Studies faculty, the Alexander Library Reference Team, and Access Services, the selector for Medieval Studies has developed a new McDonnell Room access policy. The policy has helped effective use of this unique facility.



The Annex renovation project was finally complete, The project consisted of filling the back bat with stacks, adding a new HVAC system, a new roof to the front section, and some renovations to the front staff areas. Notwithstanding these additional shelves, the libraries still have critical space shortages.

Art Library

An Art Library Space Planning Committee was formed to study the use of space in the library and to develop space use recommendations. The University Librarian accepted the report and work has begun with the university architects.

Douglass Library

After many years of planning Phase I of D21:The Douglass Library for the 21st Century has become a reality. It is expected that the project will be complete in January 2004. When finished, in addition to a totally modernized infrastructure (new HVAC, data lines, electric lines, sprinkler system, alarms), the public will see a new information commons with RUCS computers and library electronic resources available side-by-side, wired banquettes, a group study room, art galleries, a rotunda, and graduate carrels.

External Support

Major gift of $2,009,413.11 from Mr. and Mrs. Van Wagoner (Class of '32) was directed to the Alexander Library for its collections. Their generous gift will be much appreciated by the users and staff of the Alexander Library for years to come. The gift will enhance the overall collections in Humanities and Social Sciences as well of that of Special Collections.

As in the previous year, Patricia Piermatti, Pharmaceutical Science Librarian, received $2,000 cash donation from New York Chapter of Society of Cosmetic Chemists for the enhancement of Library of Science and Medicine Library collection in the area of cosmetic chemistry.

Funds from the successful 2001-2002 ACIC (Advisory Committee on Instructional Computing) proposal ("To Build an Information Infrastructure for Undergraduates: A Proposal to Enhance Group and Individualized Library Instruction") were received in fall 2001. An improved technical infrastructure is in place via dual monitor system at major facilities for individualized instructions at reference desk. NBL is also equipped with dual monitor laptops for outreach programs. Installation of the new instructional software NetOp was tested and completed for classroom instruction in some locations.

ISSG shepherded another partially successful ACIC grant for this academic year, entitled "Capitalizing on a Past Investment: A Proposal to Upgrade Instructional Facilities in the Alexander Library," The writers of the proposal for this year were S. Bartz (coordinator), R. Jantz and K. Mulcahy. While the proposal requested funding to upgrade facilities at the Alexander Library SCC Data Center and Information Handling Labs only the Data Center portion was funded.

Kayo Denda received $9,000 grant from the Rutgers Department of Sexual Assault Services and Crime Victims Assistance for the collections and for the development of "Information Pathway" a digital resource on sexual assault.

K. Wenk with Dr. Peter Day presented a very successful program: The Research Revolution: Science and the Shaping of Modern Life. She received a grant from the National Resources Pilot Site and a Friends of the Rutgers University Libraries program grant.


Access Service was particularly busy with eight resignations, twelve promotion/transfers and ten new hires. The faculty were equally busy with filling three vacant positions including temporary librarians; one search is currently in effect; and three other positions are in process of being filled. The year has seen two retirements of library faculty and transfer of a 40% line to a teaching department. Personnel actions included one promotion with tenure and three cases of reappointment. NBL faculty at large supported six colleagues' sabbatical leaves by closing rank.

Outreach Activities

Please see Thelma Tate, Global Outreach Librarian report. Listed here are supplements to her report.

The world history librarian organized an international symposium "Hungarian Culture and Resources for Research in an Online Environment" in conjunction with the New Brunswick-Debrecen Sister Cities Program, in collaboration with global outreach librarian.

Jointly with ISSG (Information Services Steering Group) chair/SCILS liaison, the world history librarian supervised German library intern Sabine Rauchmann during her six months in RUL. He also has provided extensive guidance to the libraries of Moldovan State University in Chisinau with support from U.S.A.I.D.

Scholarly and Professional Accomplishments

NBL faculty and staff have had a productive year. More than 10 librarians and 2 staff members published articles in notable journals and over 20 NBL members made presentations in international, national, as well as state-wide forums. For details, see RU Faculty Survey.

2003-2004 Goals

Teams, departments and individual librarians have listed their goals.

The New Brunswick Libraries as a whole will evaluate how to best meet the needs of users given the large cuts to collections, personnel and below-the-line funds.

The New Brunswick Libraries will explore fund raising efforts, especially for collections.

URL: http://www.libraries.rutgers.edu/rul/staff/nbl/directors_reports/nbl_annual_report_2002_2003.shtml
Website Feedback  |  Privacy Policy
© Copyright 1997-, Rutgers University Libraries