International Association of Scientific and Technological University Libraries

IATUL News Alerts

Archive February 2014

2014 IATUL Conference Registrations now open

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 10:10:25 a.m.

Registration is now open for the 35th Annual IATUL Conference which will be held at the Aalto University in Espoo, Finland from 2 - 5 June 2014. The theme of the conference is “Measures for Success: Library Resources and Effectiveness under Scrutiny”.

For more information visit the website.

Library consortium tests interlibrary loans of e-books

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 10:02:25 a.m.

Duke University’s libraries lend printed books to students and faculty members at other institutions all the time via interlibrary loan. But the university’s 900,000 e-books are off limits to anyone beyond the campus.
Robert L. Byrd, Duke’s associate university librarian for collections and user services, would love to lend out those e-books. But he can’t even share them with users at nearby North Carolina Central University, North Carolina State University, or the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Because of technical and licensing restrictions, library patrons at those universities—Duke’s partners in the Triangle Research Libraries Network—can see e-books in the library catalog, but they must visit Duke’s campus to read them. "The inability to loan e-books really undermines the services we provide to our users," Mr Byrd says.
Academic libraries have a long, proud tradition of sharing books and journals through interlibrary loan. But as Mr. Byrd can attest, they’ve been stymied in their efforts to extend that practice to e-books, even though libraries are buying more and more content in digital format.

Worried about security and sales, many publishers and vendors permit individual e-book chapters to be shared but don’t routinely include the lending of whole e-books in library contracts. Even when licenses do allow e-book lending, libraries typically lack the technology to make it work. You can’t just pop an e-book into an envelope and ship it off by delivery van or the post office.
But lending e-books may soon get easier. This spring a pilot project called Occam’s Reader will test software custom-built to make it both easy and secure for libraries to share e-book files while keeping publishers happy—or so the software’s creators hope.
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Have digital repositories come of age? The views of library directors

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 10:00:34 a.m.

This survey of approximately 150 repositories assessed the achievements, impact, and success of digital repositories. Results show that while the size and use of repositories has been relatively modest, almost half of all institutions either have, or are planning, a repository mandate requiring deposit and small gains have been made in raising the profile of the library within the institution. Repositories, then, have made a good deal of progress, but they have not quite come of age.
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"I always stick with the first thing that comes up on Google. . ." Where people go for information, what they use, and why.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 9:58:27 a.m.

Key Takeaways:
  • The Visitors and Residents project seeks to identify and recommend strategies that IT staff and library professionals can adopt to help students and faculty members better discover, access, and evaluate digital information.
  • The project team interviewed participants from four educational stages — from emerging (high school/secondary school seniors and first-year college students) through experiencing (faculty members) — that focus on context and motive rather than age as a determining factor in information-seeking behaviors.
  • In addition to identifying how and why individuals engage with technology to acquire the information, the project offers recommendations on how to build relationships with community members and how to study user behavior to better test and develop library systems

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Library-press collaboration survey

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 9:56:47 a.m.

This report uncovers the current landscape of collaboration and conversation between university libraries and university presses. The report and the set of broad conclusions and recommendations on successful collaborations are the product of extensive surveying and interviews with member institutions of both the Association of American University Presses   (AAUP) and the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), conducted through 2012-2013 by the AAUP Library Relations Committee. Forty-two libraries and forty-one presses participated in this information gathering process.
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Understanding the collective collection: towards a system-wide perspective on library print collections

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 9:51:58 a.m.

An OCLC research report
Key highlights:
· Interest in shared print strategies has had several drivers: Google Books; the digital turn: changing patterns of research and learning; the opportunity costs of current use of space; efficient access to materials; and a general move to collaboration.
· The network turn is leading to changes in the focus, boundaries and value of library collections.
· Libraries and the organizations that provide services to them are devoting more attention to system-wide organization of collections—whether the "system" is a consortium, a region or a country.
· Libraries are beginning to evolve arrangements that facilitate long-term shared management of the print literature as individual libraries begin to manage down their local capacity.
· A system-wide perspective signals a real shift in emphasis.
· A range of first-ever calculations providing quantitative estimates and analyses of the system-wide collection.
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Academic Torrents offers new means of storing, distributing scholarly content

Wednesday, 26 February 2014 9:50:26 a.m.

By putting distribution and storage of papers and datasets in the hands of their authors, Academic Torrents brings even more DIY ethos to the world of academic publishing, and may help to solve a few problems in the field in the bargain. While libraries and colleges disintermediate scholarly publishing by hosting their own institutional repositories and backing up to offsite services like LOCKSS and Portico, Academic Torrents goes a step further, offering researchers the opportunity to distribute the hosting of their papers and datasets to authors and readers, providing easy access to scholarly works and simultaneously backing them up on computers around the world.
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