Mar 252014

We are now back in the office after our EDINA Serials Forums last week in London and Edinburgh and would like to send a large thank you to all the attendees. We were very happy to see the level of interest and engagement in our services, particularly the new look SUNCAT! We were particularly delighted to receive the positive feedback about the new interface and the latest planned development of a journals holding comparison service.

After an initial chat over coffee and biscuits both EDINA’s User Support Deputy Manager, Andrew, kicked off the afternoon sessions started with an overview of EDINA’s involvement in the world of journal discovery, access and preservation and how it is positioned within JISC’s portfolio of services.


Fred Guy, SUNCAT Service Manager, and Zena Mulligan, SUNCAT Project Officer, then focussed in attention on SUNCAT, starting with a brief background to SUNCAT, moving onto the context for the current development, the key enhancements of the new look service, a live demonstration and rounding off with how SUNCAT can support end-users and library professionals, illustrated with a number of use cases.


The final use case focussed on the UK Research Reserve and led into an informative overview from the UKRR Manager, Daryl Yang, describing its core objectives, members, figures on material disposed of and retained, savings made and future plans as well as how SUNCAT supports them with the vital scarcity checking element of their decision making process.

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It was then time for afternoon tea and cake – which for our Edinburgh session, was provided by EDINA’s resident baker (and SUNCAT’s Metadata Expert), Tasha, who made everyone very happy with a selection of truly delicious cupcakes. The break also provided an opportunity for networking and to catch up with our current contributors and to speak to those attendees interested in contributing to SUNCAT or in finding out more about the holdings comparison development.


After the break, Fred provided an introduction to the need for archiving programmes for ejournals mentioning the work of the Keepers Registry and our analysis that has found that over two thirds of ejournals accessed in 2012 are not currently being archived by any organisation.

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Adam Rusbridge, UK LOCKSS Alliance Coordinator, then gave a walk-through of the forthcoming Title List Comparison feature of the Keepers Registry, which will assist with print rationalisation and subscription management workflows.  This led onto a broader discussion of EDINA services that can assist with continuing access assurances.  The UK LOCKSS Alliance helps libraries to build local collections of content and provide readers with continuing access by integrating the collection with link resolver systems.  Adam then gave an overview of SafeNet, a project to establish a shared service that offers strong continuing access assurances in conjunction with an authoritative entitlement registry to manage access permissions.


Finally, after a final round of Q&A we wound up the afternoon by asking if anyone would be interested in attending a similar event in the future and having received a very definite yes, please look out for something similar (but different) in 2015!

Thanks again from the Forum presenters, Andrew Bevan (EDINA User Support), Fred Guy (Keepers Registry & SUNCAT), Zena Mulligan (SUNCAT), Adam Rusbridge (Keepers Registry, UK LOCKSS Alliance) and Daryl Yang (UKRR). Any questions about the Forum or the services highlighted please contact us via the EDINA helpdesk at

Feb 192014

A reminder about this this free half-day event focusing on some of the key issues in journal management – with presentations and discussion of the overarching themes and successful approaches in addressing them.

This is an opportunity to learn more about developments of EDINA activities in this area -covering the redeveloped National Union Catalogue of Serials, SUNCAT, as well as community initiatives such as the UK LOCKSS Alliance and Keepers Registry, focussing on long-term access to journal content.

We are also delighted to announce the addition of a special guest speaker, Daryl Yang, UK Research Reserve (UKRR) Manager, who will provide an update on the UKRR and talk about how EDINA supports this valuable service.

Join us for a lively debate and afternoon tea.

Presenters: Zena Mulligan (SUNCAT), Fred Guy (Keepers Registry, SUNCAT), Adam Rusbridge (Keepers Registry, UK LOCKSS) and Daryl Yang (UKRR)

Draft Agenda

1.00 – 1.30 pm              Registration and tea/coffee

1.30 – 1.45 pm              Putting the Serials Forum and EDINA services in context

1.45 – 2.45 pm             Managing your journals – how SUNCAT can help you fulfil your ILL requests; keep your catalogue up to date and analyse your collection (including use cases; how SUNCAT supports the UKRR, details of the redevelopment; demo of the new service, and future plans)

2.45 – 3.00 pm              Forum discussion on SUNCAT issues

3.00 – 3.30 pm              Tea/coffee and cake

3.30 – 4.15 pm              Securing continuing access to e-journal content: how EDINA’s services can help (with reference to the Keepers Registry, UK LOCKSS Alliance, and PECAN initiatives)

4.15 – 4.45 pm              Forum discussion on Keepers Registry, LOCKSS, PECAN etc. issues

4.45 – 5.00 pm              Summary and next steps


London:  Monday 17th March 2014, Brunei Gallery, SOAS, near Russell Square, London
Registration and event details:
Please book by Thursday 6th March 2014

Edinburgh:  Friday 21st March 2014, Main Library, University of Edinburgh
Registration and event details:
Please book by Friday 14th March 2014

For further information about the Forum please contact the EDINA helpdesk at

We look forward to seeing you next month!

 February 19, 2014  Posted by at 3:32 pm Uncategorized Tagged with: , , , , ,  No Responses »
Jul 032013

UK Research Reserve (UKRR), a collaborative programme between the HE sector and the British Library (BL), aims to preserve research material for the community and build up a national research collection in a time of rapid change. By de-duplicating low-use research material together, UKRR members (29 HEIs, led by Imperial College London, details can be found on UKRR’s website: are able to dispose of print journals and repurpose newly available space to better meet local demands, without losing access to the content. So far, UKRR members have released more than 70km of shelf space, or 10,700 square metres, and it is estimated that more than £21m capital savings and £8m estate management costs have been achieved.

The HE-BL partnership is supported by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE). It started with an 18-month pilot phase which proved the concept and set the foundation for the programme. Its success resulted in HEFCE’s further investment of £10m to expand the scheme nationally and to encourage more HEIs to take part. UKRR has been further awarded an extension of 12 months to January 2015; it enables us to de-duplicate more material, improve our data, and explore potential opportunities.

The collaborative and coordinated approach we have adopted aims to identify one ‘access copy’ (normally held by the British Library) and two preservation copies distributed amongst the membership. To achieve this, one of the processes we put in place is called scarcity checking (i.e. a process designed to determine if an item offered by one member is available elsewhere within the membership, and if so, at which institutions ), and the collaboration with EDINA helps streamline work flow and save time and staff resources required in the process. Initially, the scarcity checking was conducted by each member institution as they offered holdings to UKRR for de-duplication. It was time consuming and prone to errors and inaccuracy.

A successful pilot was run between the University of Edinburgh (one of UKRR members) UKRR and EDINA. EDINA developed a script which triggered an automatic process to accept a file of records submitted by a UKRR member for searching against the whole SUNCAT database and the local catalogues of the two UKRR libraries which are not SUNCAT Contributing Libraries. This collaboration has contributed to the quality of the data we process, helped reduce associated risks and significantly reduced the time required for checking in member libraries. As a result we have more reliable data to base our final de-duplication decisions on.

UKRR’s work with its partners is key to the programme’s success, and such collaborations further demonstrate synergies that can be created when the community work together. We value the work that EDINA has done for us, and we look forward to continuing working with EDINA and to bringing benefits and values to the community.

Daryl Yang, UKRR Manager

Jul 212008

The SUNCAT team met up with the UK Research Reserve (UKRR) Project Manager, Jean Crawford, last week to discuss SUNCAT’s role in the UKRR, the UKRR’s future plans and how SUNCAT might provide greater assistance in Phase 2 of the UKRR.

The UKRR has just received £9.84 million in HEFCE funding to proceed with Phase 2 of the project which aims to preserve access to low use print journals in Higher Education by storing copies in the British Library and selected Higher Education institutions allowing the remaining participating institutions to dispose of their print runs, freeing up significant space and resource.

SUNCAT contains the journal holdings data of all of the UKRR Phase 1 libraries. Currently it is used as an initial check on where journals, identified by UKRR participants for disposal, are held in other UKRR libraries. SUNCAT also displays the UKRR flag on journal holdings where this is supplied by our Contributing Libraries.

Both UKRR and SUNCAT share similar aims regarding the quality of journal data. Both are keen to see records updated, particularly to include ISSNs where these are missing, to allow for the accurate identification and matching of records for the same title. In the UKRR this ensures that participating libraries can confidently dispose of titles in the knowledge that they are being stored elsewhere and in SUNCAT’s case it allows researchers to quickly identify the location of titles throughout the UK.

One area where SUNCAT may be able to assist the UKRR further is by providing them with reports of journals which are not widely held in the UK and can therefore be considered “at risk” even if they have not been formally identified for disposal by UKRR participants.

SUNCAT will also consider adding any new libraries which join Phase 2 of UKRR which are not already in the catalogue to ensure that SUNCAT continues to be a comprehensive search and location tool for the UKRR participants. However, any new libraries added to SUNCAT will continue to be considered on a number of merits asides from membership in the UKRR.

Other possibilities which were highlighted in the meeting were that of adding the UKRR as a Contributing Library to SUNCAT or providing a UKRR “view” onto the SUNCAT catalogue. This view would include only UKRR libraries and exclude any electronic only records, making the search, discovery and checking process more efficient for the UKRR participants.

Finally, another planned SUNCAT development, involving deep-linking from holding records on SUNCAT directly to the equivalent record on the Contributing Libraries own catalogues, was also discussed. Almost all of the SUNCAT Contributing Libraries are now updating their records regularly, with the majority on a monthly basis, but linking out to records would mean the most up-to-date holdings information would be easily accessible to UKRR participants.

SUNCAT is the Serials Union Catalogue for the UK. Visit the service at
 July 21, 2008  Posted by at 2:17 pm News Tagged with: ,  No Responses »