University Library Committee

Ask a Librarian

September 11 , 2007

Members Present
Allen, Barkan, Corfis, Frazier, Kemnitz, Olneck, Schneider (recorder), Silberman, Van Gemert

Braithwaite, Carr, Gilbertson, Gottlieb, Helman, Konrad, Kruse

Review of Handout Materials
Van Gemert reviewed the packet of materials that he distributed to committee members. The packet included (but was not limited to) the following: ULC minutes, ULC annual report, GLS strategic direction document – draft, Faculty survey language – draft, GLS Organization chart, Introduction to library instruction, Introduction to Member libraries.

All present introduced themselves.

Election 2007/2008 ULC Chair & Liaison to Committee Appointments
Silberman agreed to put his name forward as the ULC committee chair. With no additional volunteers from the floor, Allen moved and Kemnitz seconded the nomination of Silberman as committee chair. The vote carried unanimously. Van Gemert expressed his appreciation to Silberman for volunteering.
Van Gemert asked for volunteers as the ULC liaison to the Memorial Library Committee. Olneck agreed to be the liaison to that committee.
Van Gemert then asked for volunteers as the ULC liaison to the Campus Planning Committee. This committee appointment may require considerable time but it was that this is a very important campus committee for the library to be a part of. There were no initial volunteers but Van Gemert and Silberman will follow up with ULC members that were not at the meeting.

Director’s Report, Ken Frazier

  • Frazier reported that his experience as the interim CIO was a fun, interesting, and enlightening for many reasons. The experience also generated ideas for collaborative opportunities between the library and DoIT. IT on this campus is complex and the libraries’ reliance on a variety of technological applications reiterates the need for collaboration between DoIT and the university libraries.
  • There is a serious need for a preservation facility for this campus and any successful initiative to acquire a preservation facility will need private funding in order to be approved at the local and state level. Frazier indicated that much of his focus over the next year will be on fundraising efforts and in collaborating with campus foundations.
  • Research initiatives are an integral part of this campus and the libraries’ role in resource and service support is critical. Unfortunately, the total research dollars to the campus went down for the first time in the last fiscal year. This will have a significant impact all across campus. Knowledge management and collaboration remain important components of current successful research grant proposals and the libraries can be an important partner in this.
  • In recent years, the library has collaborated with the Unions, residence halls, and facilities to envision and identify potential collaborative learning spaces in many buildings. This work will continue in the future. One recent example is the discussions with the Wisconsin Historical Society on remodeling the reading room as a collaborative learning space.
  • Collaboration is a reoccurring theme as the libraries partner with DoIT, researchers, foundations, funding bodies, facilties and more to support the learning, research, and teaching functions of the university.
  • Kemnitz asked about whether will collaborate with the UW Foundation. Frazier indicated that he will talk with all foundations on campus.
  • Allen commented on the importance of collaboration between sciences and the humanities.
  • Olneck asked about what is meant by collaborative spaces. Frazier responded that collaborative spaces can mean different things but that many of them are being thought of as inviting spaces that can be quickly repurposed and provide shared equipment/technology for discussion, learning, and research, publishing, teaching, and more.

Reports from Other Campus Directors

  • Law – Barkan reported that the papers of J. Willard Hurst have been collected and brought together at the Law Library where they will be archived, an extensive subject guide will be created, and they may be digitized in the future.
  • Engineering – Helman reported on a collaborative effort with GE Healthcare in providing online training programs.
  • College – Kruse said that they have recently completed a project of journal assessment which resulted in extensive weeding of the collection and the repurposing of space for students. Kruse also invited members of the committee to attend a readings event being held at College for Banned Books Week on September 27.
  • Steenbock – Gilberton reported that the facilities upgrade to lighting, HVAC system, ceilings and more being done as part of the CURB project is complete. All public spaces are now open and very inviting. Also, Steenbock has completed their journal renewal process and they are continuing to move to an electronic collection. Gilbertson also reported that the archives unit has nearly completed moved to Steenbock’s 4th floor.
  • Memorial – Konrad reported that the study spaces in Memorial continue to be improved and recent statistics show that many more people are coming into Memorial Library. The library recently welcomed Jeanette Casey as the new director of the Music Library. The library will also be hiring someone to replace Yvonne Schofer as the British & American Humanities selector.
  • CIMC – Carr recently assessed the impact of electronic and digital collections and did a review of journal subscriptions over the summer. Changes included a reduction of print and microform collections to provide more space for student learning. The CIMC has also recently acquired 20 new laptops with 8 having dual-boot capabilities. Carr also reported that they recently co-hosted an ice cream social for freshman, facilitated a new orientation programs for TA’s, and gave a welcoming cake social for juniors accepted into the teaching program.
  • WHS – Gottlieb reported on Jim Danky’s recent retirement and said that an endowed conservator position has been created and may be posted soon.

2006/2007 ULC Annual Report
Silberman asked if there were any edits needed to the ULC annual report before it was approved. Gilbertson recommended that the development section of the report include a statement on other gift funds that had not been included. With not additional changes proposed, Silberman asked for a motion to accept the ULC annual report with the change proposed by Gilbertson. Olneck moved and Kemnitz seconded the motion to accept. Motion carried.

GLS Strategic Directions & Goals
Van Gemert referred to the draft copy of the GLS strategic directions and goals that was distributed and said that the library’s management group worked with staff in identifying strategic directions for the library including assessment, building of library collections, increasing visibility for instruction and teaching, improving access to resources, building partnerships, and integrating libraries into teaching and learning spaces.

2007/2008 Campus Libraries Budget
There has not been a state-funded increase to the budget for the last 10 years. The flat budget combined with significant annual increases in journal costs have required additional cancellations in journal subscriptions this year. Campus administration is aware of the difficulties in providing access to needed library resources and has supported the libraries with one-time funding last fiscal year. Even with an unresolved state budget, the GLS is committed to protecting 101 funding for collections at current levels. The GLS recently purchased new ILL software which will facilitate easier identification and access to off-campus resources.

Google/Library Book Search Update
The goal of the project will be to ultimately digitize over 500,000 items in the library’s collections. The project is going well and the libraries are sending nearly 10,000 items every four weeks. The digitized items are beginning to appear in a Google search. Van Gemert reported that there has been a discussion at the CIC of a shared digital repository.
Kemnitz asked whether there had been any problems in the physical transfer of materials. Van Gemert answered that there have not been any problems in the transfer to date but that there had been some initial problems with image quality. The quality of images captured by Google has since been improved.
Kemnitz asked whether a shared repository is more in line with current thinking on the advantages of a distributed system. Frazier reported that many different approaches had been discussed and that a hybrid of both a shared and distributed system may be implemented. All agree on potential savings by collaborating in an electronic repository.

ULC 2007/2008 Agenda Building
Members discussed additions to the ULC agenda list including a future discussion of integrated versus divided collections and the decision-making process in database and journal purchases. Carr recommended that a future agenda item may be a look at a statistical and budgetary snapshot of special purpose libraries on campus. In addition to the ideas on the agenda, Silberman will add the discussion items brought forth throughout the meeting to a combined list of future agenda items for ULC meetings.

Van Gemert announced that Nolan Pope will be retiring this year and that he has been important administrator for the library technology group and has led the group through many strategic technological changes.
Van Gemert announced that Abbie Loomis is retiring soon and she has been a campus leader and advocate for library instruction and information literacy. She will be sorely missed.
Allen asked about the impact of Frazier’s return on library organization and management. Van Gemert responded that the library’s management group will be discussing the reporting structure but that Van Gemert will continue with overall operations management and Frazier will be focusing on external relations and fund-raising.

Meeting adjourned at 3:55 PM.


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