Jul 022014

I thoroughly enjoyed the recent Interlend 2014 conference at the Carlton Highland Hotel in Edinburgh. Interlend is the annual conference for the Forum for Interlending and Information Delivery (FIL), which is an organisation for those involved in interlending and document supply, enabling them to exchange ideas and views and also to raise the profile of this area of work nationally and internationally.

This year’s conference took place on EDINA’s home turf in Edinburgh and featured an excellent range of talks focusing on marketing interlending services, developments to systems supporting interlending and case studies of evolving interlending services in practice. My highlights would have to include:

Anthony Brewerton, Head of Academic Services at the University of Warwick, who kicked off the conference with a lively and engaging tour of the key concepts to be considered when marketing and branding a library service. This included the ladder of loyalty – developing relationships with your customers, until they become advocates of, then champions of and finally partners in developing your service.

Ann Lees and Stephen Winch from NHS Education for Scotland Knowledge Services Group (NES KSG) recounted the trials of dealing with a “no copying” policy across NHS Scotland (NHSS), following the Scottish Government’s decision several years ago not to renew the then existing CLA licence. To compensate, a service was set up to provide copyright fee paid copies of material via the British Library. In order to streamline this process NES KSG utilised the British Library’s API to enable NHSS users to make requests via the Knowledge Network search platform. Users can run a search on the Knowledge Network and if no full text is available to them a link to login to the new Document Delivery service is displayed. The user is asked to fill in details about the reason for the request, preferred delivery option and then the order is placed via the British Library DDS API. NHSS librarians also receive email copies of the requests and go into the system to approve them. The system went live earlier this year and usage is gradually taking off. However, since June this year a revised CLA licence has been signed so restricted copying is now also available within NHSS.

I feared that a presentation on copyright could be rather dry but Emily Stannard, the Copyright & Compliance Officer from the University of Reading gave an engaging and informative update on the current status of key copyright developments in the UK, particularly the copyright exceptions which came into force at the start of June 2014. These include:

Supplying single copies of published works to (non-profit) libraries and to library users. No contract or individual licence can override this exception, which could have implications for those libraries looking to fulfil ILL requests via copies of articles from e-journals. Potentially libraries would not need to check individual licences before supplying copies. Emily advised us to keep our eyes peeled for more information on this topic.

Other exceptions include:

  • Preservation copying covers all works
  • No requirement for paper copyright declarations, an online declaration with checkbox or digital signature is now sufficient
  • Libraries can copy all types of work for persons doing non-commercial research/private study
  • Text and data mining for non-commercial purposes
  • Accessible copies for disabled people
  • Making works available on dedicated terminals (providing there is no contract saying you can’t)

Marjory Lobban’s (Document Delivery Supervisor at the University of Edinburgh) review of interlending at the University of Edinburgh was set against the backdrop of the changing environment the library is operating within the University, with more online courses, more distance learners, more students overall and reduced library sites.

Following a downward trend in ILL requests from the late 1990s to early 2000s with the emergence of e-journals, figures started to level out again when the University started using WorldShare in 2007 and started to increase in 2010 when the University started using Iliad leading to more exposure to overseas libraries accompanied by a move to online requesting, which streamlines the process for users and ILL staff. An increasing number of supplies to the University are coming from overseas libraries so ILL requests are now often sent straight overseas rather than to the British Library or other UK libraries. Lending to overseas is also increasing.

Future plans include looking at pay per view options where full text isn’t immediately available to the user. Purchasing items if cheaper than the interlending option and rebranding the ILL service.

I also gave a presentation focusing on the new SUNCAT service, including:

  • Background and context to the recent redevelopment
  • Highlighting the key features which can be found on the new service
  • Describing how SUNCAT can assist end users, library staff and in particular ILL staff
  • A live demo of the new service
  • An update on future plans for the service

Attending Interlend 2014 not only let me introduce the new SUNCAT interface to one of our valued user groups, but also helped to give me more information on what is happening and some key priorities in the world of interlending, all very helpful as we consider how to continue to develop the SUNCAT service.

The presentations for all the sessions will soon be available on the FIL website.

Jun 182008

Last month we reported our attendance at a North West Interlending Partnership meeting in Preston, where we took the opportunity to conduct a quick survey with the participants at the meeting. We have now analysed the responses and the following is a short summary of the findings.

The North West Interlending Partnership provides Inter Library Loan (ILL) support services to libraries in the north west of England. It has a total of 32 partners, including 20 Public Library Authorities; 11 Academic Libraries and one Specialist Library.

  • 33% of the respondents had previously used SUNCAT as part of their (Inter-Library Loan) ILL workflow.
  • The remaining 67% all indicated that they would now consider using SUNCAT as part of their ILL workflow.
  • 76% of the respondents indicated that they would like more public libraries to be added to SUNCAT
  • 50% of respondents indicated that they would like more Higher Education and Specialist libraries to be added to SUNCAT

Respondents were also asked to rate the usefulness of five new or potential SUNCAT developments.

  • The recent development Listing the holding libraries on the result screen was the most popular development with 100% of the respondents rating this at the top end of the scale.
  • The second most popular development was Linking from SUNCAT holdings to the equivalent record on Contributing Libraries’ local catalogues with 86% of the respondents rating this at the top end of the scale.
  • The next most popular development was Linking from SUNCAT to Table of Content (TOC) services, e.g. Zetoc with 67% of respondents rating this at the top end of the scale.
  • Following this, Integrated presentation and access to SUNCAT, COPAC, Zetoc etc. had 57% of the respondents rating this at the top end of the scale.
  • The least popular development was the Integration with ILL request mechanisms which only 43% of the respondents rated at the high end of the scale.

These results were very encouraging for SUNCAT, demonstrating that we are on track with our new and planned developments, but should concentrate on developing deep links to local catalogues and to setting up links to TOC services. The results also highlight that it would be helpful to include more public libraries on the catalogue and to promote the service further to the ILL community.

SUNCAT is the Serials Union Catalogue for the UK. Visit the service at http://www.suncat.ac.uk.
 June 18, 2008  Posted by at 3:12 pm News Tagged with: , ,  No Responses »
May 212008

SUNCAT were invited to present at the North West Libraries Interlending Partnership meeting on Wednesday 14th May, in Preston. The presentation included an introduction to and demonstration of SUNCAT, as well as focussing on how the service can help Inter-Library Loan (ILL) librarians and researchers making ILL requests. As a freely available service SUNCAT is an ideal location tool for ILLs allowing librarians and researchers to view the holdings of 66 libraries in one search.

After the presentation SUNCAT held a short “surgery” along with the British Library and the Transport Provider (DX) where participants were able to ask more in-depth questions about the service.

There was significant interest from the participants who were keen to see SUNCAT include more public libraries, links to table of contents services, such as Zetoc and closer integration with ILL request mechanisms. We also carried out a short survey with the participants and will post the results of this shortly.

All in all this was a very useful and informative event for SUNCAT, allowing us to disseminate news to one of our key user groups while also gathering feedback which will help us to improve the service appropriately.

We are also happy to report that the journey back from Preston to Glasgow was somewhat quieter than the trip down, without the company of many thousands of Rangers fans!

SUNCAT is the Serials Union Catalogue for the UK. Visit the service at http://www.suncat.ac.uk.
 May 21, 2008  Posted by at 1:00 pm News Tagged with: ,  No Responses »