New Brunswick Collections Group Meeting Minutes
Friday, May 09, 2003

Dess, Fetzer, Hancock, Kuchi, Libutti, Lo, Mardikian, Mulcahy, Mullen, Niessen (recorder), Perez-Gilbe, Hartman, Piermatti, Sheehy, Sloan, Smulewitz, Toyama, Vazquez, Wenk.

  1. Introductions: Two new members were introduced: Karen Hartman is now handling Social Work, and Matthew Sheehy is acting Music Librarian

  2. Agenda: The agenda was approved without change.

  3. Previous minutes: The minutes of the previous meeting were approved without change.

  4. Special Announcements (Toyama): Bob Sewell will handle the (AS**) fund codes, and Kayo Denda the (JA**) fund codes. Handling of the Chinese and Korean invoices still needs to be resolved.

    Sheehy and Smulewitz will both report to Farideh Tehrani as Head of Access/Collection Services. Toyama strongly urged the group to not allow any lines be lost through this arrangement, which will allow for better coordination and more efficiency. Tehrani will also be acting in Francoise Puniello's former position as head of facilities.

    The chair thanked Toyama for her leadership and support of collections, and she was applauded by all in attendance.

  5. Budget update and overview (Dess):

    The distributed handout showed that spending is going well. The free balance just under $38k hides some growing negative free balances in MonoPubSer, ie standing orders. Sewell may need to cover these from his central funds.

    There are still many unspent, undistributed funds available. RPMX is still available, despite the previously announced March 1 deadline

    Sloan suggested that REMX be added to the central funds tracked on the updates, and Dess agreed.

    Sewell announced in CDC that we could see a worst-case scenario drop of as much as $2million in the collections budget in the Fall. There almost certainly will be cancellations of current periodicals. Therefore, selectors were advised to prepare contingency priority lists of potential cancellations using the excel files of (**P*) funds recenntly distributed by Gracemary and Julie. But it is still premature to discuss titles with your research faculty.

    Sewell will issue a message for research faculty preparing them for potential cancellations. It was suggested that this message be widely disseminated, including in RUL News. Because of continuing uncertainties about the magnitude of budget cuts in 2004, Sewell will not authorize preliminary utilization of state fund monograph allocations in SIRSI on July 1 (i.e., pre-budget allocations) that would be only 50% of last year's level, even though this would be considered a very prudent and conservative assumption in more normal times. This means that no new firm order monograph purchases will be possible after June 30 until further notice. As regards the NB approval plan in 2004, further clarification is needed.

    Several members of the group pointed out that major cancellation projects are expected all over the country, hence there is little point in our being shy about publicizing the dire situation when we have hard figures.

    Subgroup reports: Fetzer learned at her meeting with Kevin Coyle of Blackwells that there has been a gap in our profile for "social science research" (7205). She has asked Mary Page to include this code in the books profile.

  6. Journal usage data and related mattes (Dess)

    Dess compiled data from the Science and Social Science components of Web of Science for all Rutgers authors' journal publications over the period 2001-2003, the journals in which they appeared, and the journals that they cited. The data has been webbed by Karen Wenk:

    This information should be useful in helping selectors construct prospective journal cancellation lists.

    ScienceDirect is currently ~one-seventh of the materials budget or $1.2million. Reed-Elsevier's terms make it difficult to do anything, but Ross Atkinson of Cornell is leading a campaign. Dess has looked at alternatives to ScienceDirect, and found that 80% of RU use is concentrated in 30% of the ScienceDirect titles, or 371 titles out of 1200. Mary Page priced them out with the 10% surcharge for electronic access and found that getting only the 371 would cost about the same as the current subscription. If we take only the top 100 titles, the cost would be ~$300k; or the top 200 titles, $600k. The impact of a change of this magnitude on our user community would need to be more fully examined. It is suggested we investigate Ovid as a source of fulltext for Reed-Elsevier titles, if such a switch is possible; but note that unless there are very significant savings, they will be offset by processing expenses. Also note that, in the case of Math, a number of the most important titles are not in the Science Citation Index.

    Mulcahy noted that at the Service Luncheon President McCormick once again urged people to write letters to the Legislature and Governor's office. Nancy Winterbauer has pointed out that Rutgers' political position is very delicate.

  7. NBCG election plans (all)

    Dess, Mardikian, Fetzer 2-yr terms end 6/30/03

    Mulcahy's terms as Humanities, Reference subgroup chair continues through 6/30/04

    There also needs to be an ISSG election. Arlene will assist with the elections.

    NBCG should prepare a list of nominees; please make sure somebody is willing to serve before submitting that person's name.

  8. Collection development policies (Fetzer)

    Existing collection development policies are quite dated. Fetzer asked Sewell to put online the policies we do have, and they are at . Fetzer suggests we should be working on the others, but asks what the needed components should be, and whose imprimatur is needed for them. Many members contributed to the ensuing lively discussion. (It was noted that these questions were also raised several times at CDC). We have far less information online than other RLG libraries, and what we have is inconsistent in content or out-of-date. There was a concerted effort to create policies ten years ago, but the effort to make them consistent across RUL system was a big stumbling block. Having a policy is recommended as a good defensive policy when you receive questions from the departments about what you're doing; sharing a draft policy is an excellent way to gets folks' attention, and feedback. Once you put a policy up, don't let it get buried, and commit yourself to updating it. Policies need not be system-wide, can be put up on the NBL page when ready. The consensus coming out of the discussion was that Dess should ask Sewell to put collection development policies on the CDC agenda but that individuals should go ahead and do their own policies without waiting for Godot. Subgroups can vet the draft policies; Bartz will put up a category for coll devt policies on the NBL page.

  9. Update on selector lists (Perez-Gilbe)

    Perez-Gilbe demonstrated the database as it currently stands. He hopes to have it complete, and up on the NBL page, by the summer. Searching is possible by class, subclass, selector, and keyword. Clicking on the selector gives full contact information. We will be contacted when the database is ready and online. Subgroups will consult about the orphaned LC subclasses.

  10. Miscellaneous announcements

    Vazquez commended Judit Hajnal-Ward for her work in Acquisitions with foreign language orders. People are happier with Acquisitions since our consultative meetings of the past year; suggests we may do the same with Cataloging, which is currently lacking a Spanish/Portuguese expert. Smulewitz noted that there is a working group dealing with gifts processing and related issues, called ISAWG. Recommended we wait for its export.

  11. The tentative date for the next meeting, 6/13/03, conflicts with RULF; alternative date TBA.


Respectfully submitted,
Jim Niessen, secretary du jour