Library as Place, Place as Library: Duality and the Power of Cooperation


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This talk, delivered at the February 2010 OCLC Regional Council Seminar in Auckland NZ, explores the turbulent conditions in which libraries are evolving as both places and virtual spaces on the Web. How are these conditions driving change in library collections, catalogues, and cooperative systems? What are OCLC's strategies for helping today's libraries gain visibility and impact through cooperation and data sharing? If we were building a system for library cooperation today, what would it look like?

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  • This presentation has four main parts.A section about the environment in which libraries are operating.A section about how those conditions affect library collections and cataloguesAnd then two sections that explore how a library cooperative like OCLC is engaging or might engage with its members successfully respond to changing conditions.
  • Let’s get started.
  • Here is some additional trends in North American research libraries. The ARL libraries are the 123 largest of their type in the US and Canada. These charts show changes in median resources expended per student -- library staff per student, monographs purchased per student, volumes added per student – from 2000 to 2008. The chart tracks percentage change from the base year for analysis, the year 2000, each year through 2008.Staffing per student is the most striking decline. ARLS devoted a median of over 14 staff per student in 2000, down to around 11 in 2008. More modest declines are evident in investment per student in the print collections. Click. Meanwhile, the dollars invested per student in electronic serials changed from $39 per student in 2000 to $215 per student in 2008.
  • Here is a quick look at the percentage of the materials budget spent on electronic resources – journals, aggregations of full text, and the like – comparing the average research library in North America with our hosts today. A great deal is now being invested in these types of materials.
  • Two clicks animation. This has led to another trend affecting the print collections. Increasingly in the U.S., space on central campus for the print collections loses out to other priorities. This is a photo I took last fall shortly after the official grand re-opening of the main library at the Ohio State University. The decision to move nearly half of this library’s collections to offsite storage was controversial, but it was made to give priority to more--and more inspiring--high-tech space for the campus community .The library is truly lovely and daily traffic in the library has risen since the renovation to 12,000 visitors a day.The quote is from an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education about the renovation.
  • Here are some other trends that those of you from academic libraries may find familiar. This chart tracks median circulation and reference desk transactions in North American research libraries since 1991. Circulation is in blue, reference transactions in red. I have added a linear trend line to the chart. If the trend holds, around 2010 annual median circulation will dip below 200,000 transactions—on collections generally comprised of 4 to 7 million volumes. As a rule in ARL libraries, coming to the research library to take advantage of the local collections and services is in decline.
  • The popularity of the physical library is however holding up. Students want to be there and they want t the space to be used for information commons, like the one here in this library ….
  • While are deciding to shift the print materials to storage, and even those facilities are filling up.
  • What does all this imply for the relevance and value of the library catalog? What do our catalogues today largely describe? The print collections. This is a chart showing the make up of the WorldCat database for cataloging, which represents the collection of thousands of ibrary collections .It is quite persistently, since 1999, made up of 85% books. Some of these—about 2 million at the moment—are ebooks. From this data one may make an educated guess that most library online catalogues call attention to mainly to books, printed books.
  • It seems clear that the collections, and therefore the catalogues that describe them, are in transition.
  • Often, the catalogue is only one of the tools that the library uses to present its burgeoning collections of print, nonprint, electronic and digital content to its communities. There are multiple places to look, multiple interfaces to use. The infrastructure supporting the various types of resources is costly and complex to support.
  • OCLC is one of the organizations that has attempted to help libraries improve this situation, Quite recently OCLC improved its WorldCat Local offering to deliver single-search access to multiple types of library resources, physical, electronic, and digital. .Chris Thewlis will be telling you more about this later.
  • Let’s step back for a moment and look at the whole situation of the library as a place, and as part of the Web. How libraries manage to get attention for themselves in virtual space is critically important, because that’s where their users engage with information sources. In the early part of this decade I was part of an investigation at Cornell University Library funded by the Mellon Foundation to examine new service models for the library. This is a quote from our final report.ClickWe concluded that the library must continue to use its physical space to meet the needs and behaviors of 21st c scholars and students—seen here on the left side of the balance. We also concluded that we needed to push beyond our own Web pages to embed the library in the places our users they frequent on the Web.
  • Five years later, a team at the University of Minnesota Libraries produced an excellent report called Discoverability that extended these conclusions.. Again we see the result that users find materials of interest on the larger network, esp search engines. The team is placing a lot of emphasis on tools that capture this traffic, for example from Google Scholar, and lead it back to the U of M collections. I’ll also note here the last trend, that users increasingly rely on emerging nontraditional information objects.
  • One of the trends discussed in the Minnesota report is discovering resources outside library systems.
  • Many libraries are working to capture as much attention on the Web outside their own system as they can. I’ve tried to illustration this visually for the NLZ. The NLZ puts a bib digitized photo collection out on the FlickrCommons; they push their content out into the NZ library catalogue, and so on.In my writings I have called this “outward integration” of the collections into the Web—Collections data is synchronized with other aggregations and syndicated in other Web environments.As you know, one of the places that the NLZis outwardly integrating its collections is
  • The evidence from a variety of studies suggests that scholars, students, and citizens take interest in a wider range of information objects than are traditionally ‘collected’ or ‘privileged’ as part of library collection development – and which are therefore not normally surfaced in catalogues or library discovery and delivery systems. .
  • There are indications that digital library collections, for example, are attracting a good deal of attention. This is a chart from Alexa. com, a Web traffic analysis service, showing Web traffic to the and domains. Alexa provides data about where users go once they are on a site. In the case of those who visit, 30% visit the expositions pages—a virtual gallery of curated exhibits around the collections. More than 50% of the traffic is split between the BnF library catalog and Gallica—the digital library of France. Over 40% of the visitors to the Library of Congress web site go to American Memory, which LC describes it as a digital record of American history and creativity. Contrast this with the other two most popular destinations for visitors—the catalog, at 17%, and federal legislative information at 6%.
  • This is happening to a degree with the traffic that goes to the national library site. 17% of the traffic to the nat lib site goes to paperspast, a repository of digitized newspapers, according to data on Alexa. Com.
  • OAIster is a large aggregation of metadata harvested from repos of digital library and open access repos. Here is an example of a NZ digital collection that was aggregated into OAIster that is now part of, Just t a few months ago, OCLC loaded the metadata from the OAIster repository describing more than 20 million objects in more than 1,000 digital collections into, where it is freely availalble for discovery by anyone with an Internet connection. OCLCis also about to release a freely accessible, discrete view of the OAIster database .The pages at the URL on this slide provides more information.
  • QU has a highly successful, well known open access repo of scholarly eprints. This collection metadata is also harvested into WorldCat.
  • Like the QU open access repo, other open access repositories, both discipline- and institutionally-based, are gaining in visibility and impact. This chart, also from, tracks traffic in 2008 and 2009 to three of the top open access repositories, as ranked by the Cybermetrics Lab, against the traffic to, the British Library’s domain, to give you a sense of the scope and scale of attention received by these repositories.
  • This is an example of the user’s path to discovery and connection to one of the preprints, now that the metadata is also in WorldCat. It is another place for these collections to be where users eyes are.
  • OCLC has introduced the Digital Collections Gateway to make it easier to contribute digital library metadata to WorldCat. Go thru bulletsOur goal is to aggregate the metadata from a very large number of digital library repositories, to make them easier to find and connect to.
  • I’d like to move on now to the final question I set out to examine:Let us say our various cooperative systems—OCLC, Libraries Australia, the combined NZ lib catalog and the new initiative Find—did not exist.Given the turbulent conditions that libraries face, if we were building a system for library cooperation today, what would it look like?
  • Talk to pointsIf you will, I would like to talk about the WorldCat network and the OCLC cooperative in these terms
  • The last six months have seen a great deal of progress toward putting the world in WorldCat
  • As a result of these loads and others, WorldCat is now improving its ability to represent the languages of the world’s library collectionsThe loads of the last six months finally swung the dial decidedly in the direction of a larger representation of materials in other languages than English
  • For many OCLC members, the vast majority of records come from copy cataloging of records originally created by other OCLC member institutions. The ongoing work of dedicated catalogers still provides the most valuable data used to keep collection information accurate, and make it visible and useful to information seekers. The record supply from national libraries remains very important, but the members contributions are essential to lowering the costs of cataloging for all.
  • The large amount of library location data is arguably WorldCats most valuable asset, because for searches that begin outside member library systems, there has to be a way to lead that searcher back to his or her local library. Holdings data is what makes it possiblefor the searcher’s discovery experience to become a delivery experience. That is, he or she is able to get hold of the item, which is after all the point. Make sure green box shows
  • This slide summarizes the value of the WorldCat network today.My question is, Where does the OCLC cooperative want to go from here?
  • I hope I have been able to give you a sense today of how the OCLC cooperative is moving forward to Embed member libraries in many places on the web and attract more attention to their collectionsBegin to more accurately represent the collections of the global library network of OCLC membersAnd not just the bibliographic collections, but collections with new types of information contentAnd improve the value and utility of the local library catalog through WorldCat Local.
  • Where do we want to go next?
  • Near and dear to my heart is what’s next for metadata. What if …
  • In libraries, in traditional abstracting and indexing services, and in the publication data supply chain, metadata has been for the most part professionally produced. We are beginning to see in addition a good deal of author and/or user contributed metadata which needs to be usefully folded into what we have in some way.On top of that there is metadata being produced through large scale data mining of aggregations like WorldCat, for example to produce FRBR work sets and other new services like WorldCat Identifies, which I’ll show you in a moment.
  • WorldCatIdentities is like People Australia but larger in scope.It is a product of data mining, an example of the kind of thing that can be done if you have enough aggregated data. Identities mines, reuses and remixes, bibliographic and authority data in a service intended for end users. You can think of it as, in a way, a Facebook or My Space for important people . Click.Here is the Identities page for my favorite Beatle John Lennon. Based on mining information in FRBR work sets of bibliographic data, and combined information from a number of authority files, we can tell a lot about him. Click. I have skipped most of the middle of this entry. This is a free public site. At the bottom of this entry is a tag cloud, drawn from facets mined from LC subject headings. One could imagine using such a cloud to seed further contributions from end users and creators themselves.
  • I thought you would also want to see VIAF biriefly. This is also a freely accessible public site that you can play with later if you like.I have shown here the contributing partners to this joint effort of several national libraries, hosted and implemented by OCLC.I think this work creates the foundation for a set of new services that members could employ to establish and promote online communities for researchers and other types of creators. Click. Here is the page for John Lennon, showing the various heading forms used by different national libraries and a wheel illustrating the relationships between the heading forms.Such tools might be helpful not only to make library collections more discoverable in a multilingual environment, but combined or reused in the context of a variety of services outside libraries to create higher quality discovery and delivery services for all.
  • Earlier I mentined publication data supply chain data and how it might be re-used to help publisher and library data interoperate and thus be more valuable to both groups My team has very recently launched a new service that does that. It takes in ONIX, enriches it through data mining of WorldCat,, and produces output for publishers and member libraries to use.
  • One more What If.
  • Libraries are operating in a changing, complex information landscape.One aspect of this challenge shows up in the information technology infrastructure that characterizes research libraries today.This is a slide that Mackenzie Smith of MIT used recently to describe the complex, labor intensive infrastructure her library maintains behind the scenes. So many systems and interrelationships! The library catalogue is one piece of this framework—it is called Barton.The cost of keeping this framework going is perhaps unsustainable for the long term. Especially when one considers the redundant effort devoted to building and maintaining a research library IT infrastructure for every institution that needs one.
  • What if we could take this current picture of many systems to support locally and move these systems up to a Web scale solution, or cloud computing?CLICKMy colleague will talk more about this possibility later today.
  • Library as Place, Place as Library: Duality and the Power of Cooperation

    1. 1. Library as Place, Place as Library: A Dialogue on Duality and the Power of Cooperation <br />Asia Pacific<br />Regional Council,<br />Auckland<br />5 February 2010<br />Karen Calhoun<br />Vice President, WorldCat & Metadata Services, OCLC<br />
    2. 2. Everywhere, the Library<br />Library as Place<br />Place as Library<br />Auckland Public Library, by kdt<br /><br />
    3. 3. Abstract<br />This talk explores the turbulent conditions in which libraries are evolving as both places and virtual spaces on the Web. How are these conditions driving change in library collections, catalogues, and cooperative systems? What are OCLC&apos;s strategies for helping today&apos;s libraries gain visibility and impact through cooperation and data sharing? If we were building a system for library cooperation today, what would it look like?<br />
    4. 4. TURBULENT CONDITIONS FOR LIBRARIES, Collections, and Catalogues<br />Photo: Quite Adept<br /><br />
    5. 5. Trends in Librarianship and Libraries<br />
    6. 6. Competition for Resources to Assign to New Initiatives in Libraries<br /><ul><li>Engage with institutional or community-based repositories
    7. 7. Scholarly publishing expertise/communications
    8. 8. Support for digital asset management in the communities served
    9. 9. New services for [fill in the blank]
    10. 10. Develop new alliances, partnerships
    11. 11. Reveal “hidden collections”
    12. 12. Integrate library into learning management systems, teaching and research, portals, scholar’s workstation, personal productivity tools
    13. 13. 24/7 access
    14. 14. Major space renovation
    15. 15. Offsite storage
    16. 16. Next generation systems</li></li></ul><li>Percentage Change in Median Resources Per Student at ARL Libraries, 2000-2008(Compared to 2000)<br />Change in Staff, Volumes Added, <br />Monographs Purchased Per Student<br />Data source: ARL Statistics 2007-2008<br /><br />Change in E-Serials Expenditures<br />Per Student<br />
    17. 17. Expenditure on E-Resources: ARL (Average) and University of Auckland Library (Actual), 2008<br />
    18. 18. What’s the Value of the Print Collections?<br />$108 million<br />Renovation of Ohio<br />State University <br />Library:<br />“The books had <br />come to clutter the<br />library”<br /> Ohio/4700<br />
    19. 19. What’s the Value of the Print Collections and Collection-Centered Services? Median Circulation and Reference Transactions in ARL Libraries 1991-2008, With Five Year Forecast<br />Data source: ARL Statistics 2007-2008<br /><br />
    20. 20. University of Auckland Information Commons<br />By: Margaret Cavendish<br /><br />
    21. 21. Offsite Storage … Full to Overflowing?<br />By: Watson Library<br /><br />
    22. 22. What Types of Collections Do Catalogues Generally Describe?<br />Types of Materials Described in the WorldCat Cataloguing Database, 1999-2008<br />
    23. 23. An Early Earthquake: Where Do You Begin an Online Search for Information on a Topic?<br />(2005) College Students’ Perceptions of Libraries and Information Resources: <br />a Report to the OCLC Membership: <br /><br />
    24. 24. the catalogue in transition<br />
    25. 25. Key findings:<br /><ul><li>End users bring their expectations from popular Web sites to online catalogs
    26. 26. The end user’s delivery experience is as important, if not more important than the discovery experience
    27. 27. Most important for analog materials: summaries, tables of contents, etc.
    28. 28. Most important for e- content: linking to the content itself</li></ul><br />
    29. 29. The end user perspective: a fragmented, confusing library landscape<br />Full Text DBs<br />Printed<br />Books &<br />Serials, <br />AV, <br />Maps.<br />Etc.<br />E-books<br />(sometimes)<br />Digital collections<br />Citation<br />DBs<br />Institutional<br />Repository<br />Online<br />Catalog<br />Records<br />Web <br />Lists<br />
    30. 30. Single-search access through WorldCat Local<br />Find it<br />Local catalog<br />Group catalog<br />WorldCat<br />Electronic resources<br />Digital collections<br />3rd party databases<br />One <br />result set<br />One search<br />Get it<br />Local systems<br />Group availability<br />Resource Sharing<br />Electronic delivery<br />
    31. 31. Today’s libraries exist in physical and virtual space. <br />A library is thus both a manifest place and an experience<br />of real, but intangible, “cyberspace” for those who <br />interact with it. One may describe a library system in terms<br />of the relationships between users, collections, library staff,<br />and space, with “space” defined both as buildings and <br />as virtual, networked information space.<br />--Cornell University Library. 2003. MAS2010: Models for Academic<br />Support: Report to the Mellon Foundation<br /><br />Another Type of Space: : The Virtual Library (Embedded, on the Web)<br />
    32. 32. “Discoverability” Report: University of Minnesota Libraries, February 2009<br />Trends<br />
    33. 33. Discovering resources outside library systems<br />
    34. 34. Data Synchronization and Syndication <br />Flickr Commons <br />Data synch<br />WorldCat & <br />WorldCat Partners…<br />Other partners<br />
    35. 35. What is Syndication?<br />For news features like comics, syndication publishes the feature in multiple newspapers simultaneously.<br />Web syndication makes website material available to multiple other sites. <br />Low resolution image of copyrighted work used for commentary on the topic<br />of syndication.<br />
    36. 36. WorldCat Partners<br />Google, Google Books, <br />Google Scholar<br />HCI Bibliography : <br />Human-Computer Interaction Resources<br /><br />
    37. 37. WorldCat: Global Integrator, Driving Searches to Libraries <br /><ul><li>Looking for a book on Kate Sheppard
    38. 38. Start at Google Book Search …
    39. 39. Use “Find in a library” link</li></li></ul><li>
    40. 40. Pushing metadata out, pulling users in:<br />It’s all about linking metadata<br />
    41. 41. aggregates Web searches,sending traffic back to libraries<br />595,310,617<br />32,674,282 <br />
    42. 42. The WorldCat Registry:<br /><ul><li>Provides direct linking to local library services over a variety of OCLC products including and WorldCat Local
    43. 43. Creates and manages a profile that centralizes and automates information sharing with vendors and OCLC
    44. 44. Enables greater visibility and connectivity to your regional and local collections
    45. 45. Provided that … your entry contains accurate linking data and syntax! And … OCLC numbers in your records really help with this.</li></ul>The WorldCat Registry Behind the Scenes<br />
    46. 46. Discovery and delivery of a wider range of information objects<br />
    47. 47. Rising Interest in Digital Collections on the BnF and LC Web Sites<br />Where do people go <br />on and<br />BnF:<br />Expositions: 30%<br />Catalogue: 26%<br />Gallica: 26%<br />LC:<br />American Memory: 41%<br />Catalog: 17%<br />Legislative information <br /> (THOMAS): 6%<br />Source:, 15 Nov 2009<br />
    48. 48. 17% of the traffic to goes here<br />
    49. 49. Metadata Aggregation for Digital Library Content: Monash ARROW Repository in OAIster in WorldCat<br />More info:<br />
    50. 50. Queensland University of Technology ePrints: #22 of Top 400 Repositories<br />
    51. 51. Open Access Repositories Gaining Visibility and Impact<br />2008-2009 Traffic<br />Compared:<br />*Social Science Research<br /> Network<br />*<br />*Research Papers in<br /> Economics<br />*British Library (<br />Sources: 15 Nov 2009 and the Cybermetrics Lab’s ranking of top <br />Repositories (disciplinary and institutional) at<br /><br />
    52. 52. in OAIster in WorldCat<br />
    53. 53. OCLC Digital Collections Gateway<br />A Web-based, self-service tool to contribute digital repository metadata to WorldCat (the WorldCat bibliographic and holdings database)<br />Currently available for CONTENTdm users only<br />By summer 2010, the Gateway will support any OAI (Open Archives Initiative) compliant repository <br />Two paths to WorldCat: <br />self-use of the Gateway<br />OCLC may also proactively harvest metadata from open access digital repositories or aggregators<br />
    55. 55. Network effects: The more libraries participate, the more valuable the network becomes for everyone.<br />To achieve this, make a large network of shared library content and services, global in scope.<br />
    56. 56. WorldCat Growth since 1998<br />31 December 2009: 170 million records,<br />1.5 billion holding locations<br />
    57. 57. Putting the World in WorldCat: Progress the first half of FY10 (July – December 2009)<br />
    58. 58. Language Coverage of WorldCat<br />
    59. 59. Where do WorldCat records come from?<br /> The cooperative provides the content.<br />The cooperative activity provides the value.<br />
    60. 60. Holdings representing 70,000+ libraries<br />Registration of holdings underpins:<br /><ul><li>The delivery of library collections: “delivery is as important, if not more important, than discovery” – Online catalogs study
    61. 61. Resource sharing
    62. 62. Collection analysis</li></ul>Now over 1.5 billion<br />
    63. 63. The Value of the Shared WorldCat Network Today<br />
    64. 64. Cooperative Systems at the Crossroads<br />Alice: <br />&apos;Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?‘<br />&apos;That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,&apos; said the Cat. <br />
    65. 65. Summary of what is in play: OCLC&apos;s strategies for helping members gain visibility and impact<br />
    66. 66. Bringing writers, readers, and libraries together<br /><ul><li>Local catalog linked to a chain of services
    67. 67. Infrastructure to permit global, national or regional, and local discovery and delivery of information among open, loosely-coupled systems
    68. 68. Web-scale aggregation of licensed & digitized publications, special collections, and born digital materials online
    69. 69. Many starting points on the Web leading to many types of information objects
    70. 70. Intregrate library-managed collections and online spaces for research and learning into the user’s workflow on the network</li></li></ul><li>If we were building a system for library cooperation today, what would it look like?<br />Construction<br />Zone<br />By: Kevin H.<br />
    71. 71. What If …<br />… we could collectively take better advantage of<br />The metadata we have already produced<br />Metadata we can get from other places?<br />
    72. 72. Metadata Sources<br />
    73. 73. WorldCat Identities<br />
    74. 74. Virtual International Authority File (VIAF) <br />
    75. 75. Re-Using Publisher/Vendor Metadata<br />
    76. 76. What If …<br />… Libraries could more readily share the effort and costs of collection management? <br />What might such sharing look like?<br />What would it take to do it?<br />
    77. 77. Source Mackenzie Smith, NISO Forum on LRMS ©MIT, 2009<br />
    78. 78. What if…<br />ILS<br />Acquisitions<br />Library<br />Library<br />OPAC<br />A to ZList<br />ERM<br />SelfService<br />Circulation<br />Users<br />PrintVendors<br />Users<br />Suppliers<br />Data<br />Cataloging<br />Resolver<br />Meta-search<br />ElectronicVendor<br />Partners<br />InstitutionalRepository<br />CatalogingUtility<br />National/GlobalSystem<br />ConsortialSystem<br />
    79. 79. Thank You!Karen Calhouncalhounk@oclc.org<br />