You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Innovative Initiatives’ category.


“Solutions and services.” American Libraries 40, no. 1/2 (2009): 86-87.
Six tools and technologies for distance learning are showcased. They are Serials Solutions 360 e-resource access and management solution, Tameran Graphic Systems book scanners, BBC Audiobooks, Spectrum Industries Masters Interactive lectern, BrainFuse HelpNow homework help, Moderro Technologies Xpack Internet Computer for cloud computing and a Hennepin County Library Case study using Aesop, a Frontline Placement Technologies scheduling package for part time and substitute employees.  M. Giltrud

Turner, J. L., Sweany, D., Stockton, M., & Gaetz, I. “Collaborating to serve alumni with E-resources: The Regis University experience.” Technical Services Quarterly 26, no. 1 (2009):1-12.
Librarians at Regis University (Denver, CO) recognized their alumni’s ongoing need for access to online journal resources. After conducting a survey of available services in public libraries in the region surrounding Denver, Regis librarians developed a resource called “Online Journals 24X7,” which told users where they could locate items in their local libraries. By creating a collaboration between public and academic libraries, Regis University both enhanced their alumni’s ability to do research and substantially increased the usage of expensive databases held in smaller public libraries.  M. Schumacher


“Access for non-affiliated users.” Library & Information Update 7, no. 4 (2008): 10.
Brief article reporting the issues discussed at the briefing day of two UK organizations, Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) and Society of College, National and University Libraries (SCONUL). The primary topic was federated access management available through JISC, with three case studies presented.  Audio recordings and presentations from the briefing day are available at:  D. Skaggs

“ARL Libraries get E-resource usage stats with innovative ERM.” Advanced Technology Libraries 37, no. 1 (2008): 5-6.
Brief article discussing how Innovative Interfaces’ ERM can now use Standardized Usage Statistics Harvesting Initiative (SUSHI) to compile usage statistics from a wide variety of e-resource suppliers.  Early adopters are named and provide quotes on their experience with the system and its use of the SUSHI protocol.  Benefits of the system include how it automates a formerly time-consuming manual task, freeing up staff time, and provides cost-per-use analysis.  D. Skaggs

Brown, C. C., & Meagher, E. S. “Cataloging free e-resources: Is it worth the investment?” Interlending & Document Supply 36, no. 3 (2008): 135-141.
A 3-year study by librarians at the University of Denver (CO) revealed that the cataloging of free Internet resources, such as “Making of America” (from the University of Michigan) and “Wright American Fiction”, was a valuable use of staff time and energy. Using “click-through” data built into the 856 field of catalog records, the analysis found that patrons were accessing these materials three times more often than online government documents also found in the catalog.  M. Schumacher

Chrisman, Janet K. “Electronic usage data: Standards and possibilities.” The Serials Librarian 53 no.4 (2008): 79-89.
In order to understand well their patrons’ use of electronic book and journal resources, libraries need complete and standardized data concerning usage. A new data harvesting protocol, SUSHI, imports and formats data from COUNTER (Counting Online Usage of Networked electronic Resources) to give librarians reliable information. The Washington State University libraries, working with a company called ScholarlyStats, has developed a system whereby they can track usage, cost per use and other variables across numerous platforms and vendors. With further refinements, these products can provide information critical to the serials selection/deselection process.  Automated import of usage data into ERN systems would relieve the amount of staff time expended to contact vendors in order to retrieve data.  Usage comparisons across vendor reports were enabled as vendors increased their compliance with COUNTER.  Limitations within COUNTER became apparent when attempts were made to import COUNTER data directly into an ERM system. The protocol SUSHI (Standardized Usage  Statistics Harvesting Initiative) uses web based products and XML, and SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) communicates and translates data in a common format from COUNTER. SUSHI client software requests the report from COUNTER in  XML format. The request is translated by the SUSHI server to COUNTER. The reverse action occurs and the ERM receives the data translated by the client SUSHI. Participating vendors are listed at the time this article was published. Vendors are developing ERMs that have the capability of producing a cost per usage report. Companies such as Scholarly State from MPS Technologies and others are perfecting the process with content providers. A successful ERM import of usage data is reported using the Thompson Scientific Journal Use Report from Scholarly Stats coupled with the Impact Factor, broadening the basis for collection analysis.  E. Randall

Doering, William. and Galadriel Chilton. “A Locally Created ERM: How and Why We Did It.” Computers in Libraries 28, no.8 (2008): 46-48.
Doering and Chilton decided to create an ERM at University of Wisconsin—La Cross’s Murphy Library for economic reasons, but also because many colleagues at other institutions reported their expensive commercial ERM’s were not meeting expectations. Using Microsoft Access as a platform, the two librarians collaborated in establishing the functions required, along with the appropriate data fields and tables. Within two months, and approximately 40 hours of work, the initial program was completed. Realizing that many smaller libraries might be interested in the program, the authors have released it as an open source product that is available on the library’s website. This article presents the features of the system and makes clear the authors’ ongoing commitment to share enhancements as they are added.  D. Sweet

Murray, Adam. “Electronic resource management 2.0: Using web 2.0 technologies as cost-effective alternatives to an electronic resource management system.” Journal of Electronic  Resources Librarianship 20 (2008): 156-168.
Mr. Murray proposes that the creative utilization of Web 2.0 Technologies such as blogs, wikis, Google Docs and Spreadsheets are a viable means of managing e-resources. Two primary functions of an ERM system are to collect information and facilitate communications of this information among staff as required.  The January 2008 White Paper released by the Subcommittee of the Digital Library Federation’s ERMI II identified seven acquisitions elements necessary for a proper exchange between ILS and ERMs.  The implementation of Web 2.0 applications is framed within a mock library. The storage of information function is accomplished using wikis, Google Docs, spreadsheets, and blogs in one interface. Widgets, RSS feeds, and mashups can be implemented to facilitate communication. Widgets were designed to enable the staff to update information on a specific e-resource in multiple documents or databases simultaneously. RSS feeds are generated from information gathered from Google Docs, spreadsheets, and wikis. Only the individuals involved with the e-resource on any level received this communication, which eliminated e-mail overload.  Mashups, webpages with dynamic functionality, act as platforms, allowing staff to manipulate data to the extent of their responsibility with respect to the e-resources. Other Web2.0 applications exist and, with creativity on the part of the library staff, may provide home-grown ERMs for small libraries as an alternative to commercial ERMs.  E. Randall

Ramaswamy, M., Baillargeon, T., & Simser, C.N. “Making e-reference books findable.” Library Philosophy & Practice 10, no.1 (2008): 1-10.
While e-books have been long touted as the future of libraries, statistics have shown that most patrons still feel uncomfortable reading entire monographs online. However, this does not extend to e-reference books, which can be used to access reliable information quickly. The Kansas State University Libraries found that their e-reference collection was being utilized after it was listed in the OPAC.  However, many patrons did not know how to do the advanced searching that would lead to their discovery. This led to the creation and promotion of a new dynamic e-reference collection, where patrons could access a list of e-reference books by title, author and type. It also led to a discussion of what will need to happen in the future to provide the best access to patrons as e-collections in libraries, and on the web, expand exponentially.  C. Hanrahan

Resnick, T., Ana Ugaz, Nancy Burford, and Esther Carrigan. “E-resources: Transforming access services for the digital age.” Library Hi Tech 26, no. 1 (2008): 141-156.
This paper reflects the evolution of a library’s electronic resources (ER) problem reporting help desk. In response to increased usage and access challenges, the Medical Sciences librarians and information technology staff at Texas A&M University designed and implemented a Help desk to support and address the use and access problems with the ER. The development of the ER help desk began with assumptions of problem areas, determining the amount of time needed to correct the problems, and empowering staff as the responsible parties. Through a series of evaluations, a number of issues unique to online environment and access were discovered and addressed. The authors also include details about improving response time and offer help desk suggestions and limitations. They conclude by suggesting workload distribution, capturing data elements for future improvements, and encouraging analysis of problem reports to provide tools for further service enhancements.  K.McGuire


Nesting, Vicki. “One click searching delivers full text from ProQuest and other library e-resources.” Public Libraries 46, no. 4 (2007): 63.
This article announces a new tool offered by ProQuest called “One Click,” which allows links to full-text articles whether they are from ProQuest or another content provider.  This technology searches a library’s holdings and allows users to go from ProQuest to the full text of the article with a single click.  L. Camacho

Wiles-Young, S., Betty Landesman, and Lori J. Terrill. “E-resources = E-opportunity: Connecting systems, technical services, and patrons.” Mile-High Views: Surveying the Serials Vista: NASIG and Serials Librarian 52, no. 3 (2007): 253-258.
This article discusses the challenges in establishing the best access for users to electronic resources within the Lehigh University libraries and the National Institute of Health (NIH) library collections. Seeking to leverage technology and staff both institutions sought to develop their web presence and staffing work flows. The authors discuss the challenges associated with building access points for electronic resources, staffing and staff training, subject consistency within web pages, consistent updates to the web presence, visibility of the library, application of appropriate subject headings, and creation of a help desk. Creation of interdepartmental committees, or teams, facilitated staffing consolidations. These staffing groups from each library reviewed potential technological resolutions. Each author discusses her library’s journey in becoming a vital web presence. Lehigh University used their existing OPAC, adding electronic resources to and harvesting data from the catalog to maintain an A to Z journal listing for their Website. While working towards leveraging their OPAC, the Lehigh University Libraries realized their Web pages needed both consistency between subjects and constant maintenance. The authors also discuss workflows and a desire to give the library visibility through the campus portal leading to the use of an open source solution. This solution provided avenues for leveraging technology, data, and staff training. The Collection Management Team at the National Institutes of Health Library (NIH) also discusses leveraging staffing as the number of contractors increase in response to the decrease of permanent library staff. In addition, the growing prominence of electronic resources within the collection demands the continual development of technology to support the electronic collections.  K.McGuire


Bennett, L. “Infinite riches in a little room: How can we manage, market and modernize the e-books phenomenon?” Serials 19, no. 1 (2006): 18-22. 
This article reflects on the changing nature of e-resources, evolving from being on the “fringe of academia” to “establishing themselves as mainstream.” The author particularly emphasizes e-books in her reflection, and how both publishers and librarians seem not to grasp their (e-books’) impending rise to scholarly significance. Improving marketing or promotional endeavors for e-books by utilizing factors that used to plague this electronic resource (such as access, functionality, and the “traditional” library) will help increase awareness and use of e-books. The author urges both publishers and librarians to work together towards this end, and to strive toward producing and making available “e-content,” whatever that may be (e-journals, e-books e-proceedings, etc) that academics now want.  L. Ismail

Collins, Maria. “Partnering for innovation: Company profiles and introductions for e-resource management.” Serials Review 32, no. 4 (2006): 255-265.
The article highlights five commercial resources that have partnered with libraries to enhance access and delivery of library resources.  The Internet environment has forced libraries to seek out non-traditional partnerships in order to create successful infrastructure to access and discover libraries’ resources. Grokker, Aquabrowser, and Endeca are search engines that provide free-text information retrieval techniques, visual associative search, and faceted category navigation to offer the user a better searching experience of library resources.  eRights provides the infrastructure necessary for libraries to manage access to library resources, and it offers authentication to library services.  ScholarlyStats is a service that gathers statistics from library vendors, consolidates and standardizes the data, creates reports, and provides a single point of access to the data.  L. Camacho

Cotton, Deborah and Karen Gresty. “Reflecting on the Think-Aloud Method for Evaluating e-Learning.” British Journal of Educational Technology 37, no. 1 (2006): 45-54.
Research about the use of e-resources has not kept up with the pace of e-learning. The authors investigate the use of the “think-aloud” method to evaluate users’ experience of e-resources. This method, with its roots in cognitive psychology, allows researchers to glean real-time information about user experiences. While there are some drawbacks, including running the risk of tampering with the process with verbal guidance, the researchers conclude that, used with other traditional data collection methods, the think-aloud method can be a beneficial way to study user habits in e-learning environments.  A. Cancellare

Kasarab, H. V. “The Impact of E-resources on Document Supply in a Corporate Pharmaceutical Library: The Experience of Novo Nordisk.” Interlending & Document Supply 34, no. 3 (2006): 105-108.
This case study discusses the document delivery experience of the pharmaceutical company, Novo Nordisk.  Due to electronic access of materials, delivery time of articles has significantly dropped.  The high use of journals has seen a shift from print journals to electronic journals.  After analyzing service, improvements to document delivery service include a mechanism to track journal usage that is a consideration in the purchasing of highly used journals and negotiating a pay-per-view arrangement through publishers.  The decrease in traditional document  supply is noted and the author offers suggestions for the future of document delivery.  A. Gonzalez

Letha, M. M. “Library portal: A tool for Web-enabled information services.” DESIDOC Bulletin of Information Technology 26, no.5 (2006): 11-16.
The library portal has emerged as an essential gateway for users to connect not only with the institution’s in-house resources, but also as a place to garner access to other electronic materials. Because portals are often the first stop for library information, it is important that they provide current information with a high degree of relevance. They must also strive to connect the user with their desired materials in a shorter amount of time. The author cites the Technical Information Resource Center (TIRC) of the Naval Physical and Oceanographic Laboratory (NPOL) as an example of a successful library portal, providing users with up-to-date, relevant information using traditional and modern delivery methods.  C. Hanrahan

Mischo, W. H., Norman, M. A., & Shelburne, W. A., Mary C. Schlembach. “The growth of electronic journals in libraries: Access and management issues and solutions.” Science & Technology Libraries 26, no. 3-4 (2006): 29-59.
Bibliographic control and access to electronic journals is becoming increasingly more difficult as user demands increase in tandem with a boom in electronic acquisitions from consortial contracts and aggregator subscriptions. Following an extensive literature review of user statistics, access and management issues and OPAC/ERM compatibility, the author describes, in detail, the process undertaken by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign  (UIUC). The ORR, Online Research Resources, is a combination of a searchable A-Z  list, relational database with a powerful search engine, and elements of an ERM system. Procurement and licensing were accomplished  outside of the direct workflow of acquisitions and collection development. The ORR knowledge base is developed from data sources including: a weekly data feed from TDNet, Voyager and OCLC WorldCat Bib records, manual data entry, custom batch loads, a monthly data feed from EBSCO, data migrated from the previous electronic resource database, and UlrichsWeb. The intricacies of the interaction between the elements of the ORR are described in detail, including diagrams and figures. Working in tandem, two access tools, the OPAC and the ORR, each contains data and access points, rather than making either the sole access for e-resources. Continuing discussions in the article  include the roles of local link resolvers, OPENURL, and DOI.  Users have a task successfully navigating the ILS, OPAC, A-Z list, a link resolver, and other finding aids.  Providing title level access to e-journals is the goal and this article investigates the process of development at UIUC to achieve this goal.  E. Randall

Robbins, Sarah and Kilroy, Maria. “Introducing Federated Search at LJMU: Impact on Usage Statistics and User Perceptions.” SCONUL Focus 38 (2006): 66-69.
The Liverpool John Moores University library experienced a significant increase in the use of electronic resources following the launch of federated search.  Through MetaLib, library users can search electronic resources simultaneously via “QuickSets.”  QuickSets are groups of resources created through collaboration between university faculty and the library’s subject information officers.  The link-resolver, SFX, was launched in May 2005 to assist users in linking from bibliographic records or abstracts to full-text articles where available.  That month SFX linked users to 426 full-text articles.  By October 2005, that number rose to 21,498 full-text articles.  Surveys of library users determined that MetaLib meets user expectations for search tools.  They expect results like those they would find using Google, and links to full-text materials.  The authors conclude the implementation of MetaLib has been a success.  C. Miller

Salotti, Paul. “Introduction to HAERVI-HE Access to E-Resources in Visited Institutions.” SCONUL Focus 39 (2006): 22-23.
The author’s focus is the ability of libraries to share resources as their collections become more and more electronic.  The Society of College, National and University Libraries (SCONUL) and the Universities and Colleges Information Systems Association (UCISA) have launched a joint project to develop a toolkit to assist libraries in the United Kingdom and Ireland in sharing electronic resources to visiting patrons.  The name given to the project is HAERVI (Higher Education Access to e-Resources in Visited Institutions).  The author briefly discusses other projects and tools relevant to HAERVI.  The toolkit developed by SCONUL and UCISA will cover legal, technical, and administrative issues librarians and IT managers face in providing access to electronic information resources to visitors.  The project was due to be completed by the end of May 2007.  C. Miller