Are we ready to share one librarymanagement system in Scottish HE?
JISC Grant Funding 01/12, Pathfinder projectsThe aim of this work is to contribute to a new vision for library systems…… “JISC invites projects to undertake work under one of the following broad themes: Shared library systems Emerging tools and technologies Emerging library systems opportunities” Appendix D2: Library Systems (Information and Library Infrastructure) – Pathfinder projects
JISC Grant Funding 01/12“Projects should see themselves as a stepping stone toward a different future for library systems. While the project may be time limited and contained, the opportunities and potentialvision for a future library system should not.” Appendix D2: Library Systems (Information and Library Infrastructure) – Pathfinder projects
The Benefits of SharingThis proposed project seeks to contribute towards anew vision for library systems by investigating thefollowing question:“How would a shared library management system improve services in Scotland?”This will be achieved by a project team backed bythe Scottish Confederation of University andResearch Libraries (SCURL), and led by theUniversity of Edinburgh Library.
The Benefits of SharingThere are several aspects to this question that are being investigated:Services – how do different groups of users benefit from shared content andsystems, and are there any complications introduced from such sharing?Systems – how far can a shared system sensibly reach, do suitable solutionsexist that can be shared and that scale appropriately, and to what extent is alocal view of a shared system required or possible?Content – how common are the current content holdings, licences andcataloguing practises across the libraries in Scotland that would help orhinder deeper sharing?
Project staffEach work package will be led by a different member of theproject team. WP1 – Looking ahead, Stuart Lewis, University of Edinburgh. WP2 – Users. Angela Laurins, University of Edinburgh. WP3 – Systems. Colin Watt, University of Edinburgh. WP4 – Content. Colin Sinclair, University of Stirling.A project board will oversee the project. The project boardwill be made up of members of SCURL, representativesnominated by the JISC, project staff, and other relevant staff. Itwill be chaired by a SCURL officer.Project also reports to the wider JISC Pathfinder project.
WP1: Looking ahead• Perform a brief review of recently published analysis in this area, both in the UK and internationally.• Gather together practitioners from across SCURL members and experts nominated by the JISC Programme Manager to take part in a facilitated session to start thinking about the potentials of a shared LMS for Scotland. The facilitator will ensure that the participants think across a broad spectrum of timescales, from practical steps that can be taken now, to forward thinking envisioning of possible systems in the future.• LMS Day at Stirling on 5th October - reps from HE, FE and the NLS, considered what we need from an LMS, what could be shared, what the impact might be and what it would look like to library staff and users. http://libraryblogs.is.ed.ac.uk/benefitsofsharing/the-lms- day/
“The Vote”• Do you want a shared LMS for Scotland?• Do you think a shared LMS for Scotland would work?• We asked everyone to answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to each question. Voting was anonymous.We got the following results:• 29 people wanted a shared LMS for Scotland, 3 people didn’t, and one person didn’t vote on this question.• 24 people thought a shared LMS for Scotland would work, 9 people didn’t think it would work.
WP2: Services for usersThe visions and perceived benefits will be exploredwith users through a variety of methods, includingthe use of facilitated focus groups and surveys,giving participants the opportunity to providefeedback and to contribute their own vision of anideal LMS system.• Surveys of student perceptions.• Discussion with staff running other shared systems – Rowan, Sedar, US consortia.• Impact of other cross-institutional initiatives – e.g. Glasgow Colleges.
WP 2 FindingsStudents don’t use terms like OPAC and LMS.Catalogue searches, quick and easy access tocontents.They have made little use of discovery servicesand tools to search other libraries, though PGsmore.Prepared to travel to use other libraries.
WP2 - FindingsExamples of sharing in Scotland: SDLC Glasgow Colleges SEDAR Rowan Findabook SCURL - SCOPNet
WP3: The systemsAn overview of LMS products will be compiled witha focus on the offering on consortial services.This will be coupled with an investigation into thepossibilities and issues related to the sharing andprivacy of user information, local versus cloudhosting, general local content and data, and locallycustomised presentation.The final strand will look at possibilities beyond thebasic LMS for including other related systems suchas OpenURL resolvers and e-resource managementssystems.
WP3 – SystemsAnalysis of who is using what across Scotland.How is the LMS regarded – a niche system.Likelihood of major change in near future?Other systems in use – an increasingly complexenvironment – VLE, Archives, Discovery, ILL,Reading Lists, Link resolvers and IRs.
WP3 – Sharing optionsA look at the Library Services platforms fromcommercial vendors.Kuali / OLE – a glimpse of the future, join acommunity rather than buy a system.Shared infrastructure and shared applicationinstance – with consequences for library policyand requirement for compromise.Watching brief on a developing marketplace.
WP4: The contentA shared LMS will need to be based on access toaccurate descriptions of library content, in print andelectronic forms. This work package will seek tobuild on work being done for SHEDL and the JISCKB+ project on common e-holdings of Scottish HEIs.An analysis, by survey, will be carried out toquantify the number of electronic records availablefor local, print, holdings and their format.A shared LMS need not necessarily mean a sharedor union catalogue; attitudes to this will also besurveyed.
WP4 – Content findingsScale of the shared ecollection, thoughSHEDLand other consortial arrangements.Drawing on survey data already gathered on ourholdings for SCURL and SHEDL.The potential size of a shared LMS in terms ofrecords to be managed, patron andbibliographic data.Other metadata – outside of the LMS.
WP4 - ContentPerceptions of the structure of a shared system A single bibliographic database. Cataloguing policy. Autonomy. E-resource records? Shared infrastructure – separate systems. Loss of some of the benefits of sharing?
WP5: Evaluation and disseminationEvaluation and dissemination activities will takeplace in two areas.Firstly activities will take place within and across allSCURL members, to ensure that thoroughevaluation and dissemination of the findings arediscussed at the regional level.Secondly further activities will be planned in liaisonwith the pathfinder synthesis project, to ensurethat the reports are widely available andcomplimentary to the other projects’ outputs.
WP6: Project managementEnsure that the project is managed suitably to ensurethat the project is completed on time, on budget, andin accordance with relevant requirements.The Project Manager will be the main point of liaisonwith the JISC Programme team and the synthesisproject.
Next stepsFurther blogging and analysis.SCURL “task and finish” group in 2013 to look atthe issues in more detail.Discussion at SDLC, SCURL Systems Communityof Practice.Kuali/OLE event?
Photo credits• “Sharing”: http://www.flickr.com/photos/micahtaylor/6036026737• “Vote”: http://anthonycowin.blogspot.co.uk/2011/12/toast-and-vote.html• “LMS”: http://homepage.ntlworld.com/foxfield/lms_van_117870.htm• “Content”: http://www.im3.co.uk/seo-tutorials/what-content-should-i-use-for-my- website/• “Steps” http://www.pop-music.com/steps/index.html No permission sought from any of the above! This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.5 UK: Scotland License.