University Library Committee

Ask a Librarian

October 7, 2010

University Library Committee Minutes
Thursday, October 7, 2010

ULC Members Present: Cynthia Jasper, Allison Kaplan, Ivy Corfis, Tim Allen, Steve Barkan, A. Baha Balantekin, Pam Wilson, Anna Lewis, Eileen Cullen, Ernesto Livorni, John Pfotenhauer, David Weimer, Philip Braithwaite, Sara Lazenby, Kenneth Frazier, Mary Rader, Lisa Saywell, Ed Van Gemert, Jean Gilbertson, Lee Konrad, Carrie Kruse, Richard Reeb, Deborah Helman, Dan Jacobsohn.

  1. Announcements

    Ed Van Gemert (EVG) announced that Lee Konrad, Director of Memorial Library, was appointed Director of GLS Technology on October 1. In Big Ten news, the Universities of Minnesota, Illinois, and Wisconsin–Madison are sharing a Japanese studies faculty position. This pilot program will focus on faculty development and collection development. Other schools are working on similar initiatives (e.g., Middle East studies).

  2. Update on the presentation of the 2009/10 ULC Annual Report to the University Committee and the Faculty Senate

    Ken Frazier (KF) spoke about the presentation to the University Committee. This is often a time for questions from the UC; KF was pleased to see the keen interest of the committee in the Libraries’ report. The report is available to ULC. The UC conveyed their appreciation of the work libraries do for the institution. The committee raised concerns about the continued capabilities for research and teaching by the Libraries. It is important for the Libraries to make campus communities aware of the importance of financial support. At this time there is a high level of student use, while faculty are using the library on-site services less (but probably the electronic resources more).

    Richard Reeb (RR) spoke about the current acquisition budget, which is $7 million. A subcommittee may be formed to examine budget more closely. Unless there is an increase in acquisition budget, the collection budget is not maintainable. At present 20% budget goes toward books, while over 50% goes toward electronic resources. Database costs are increasing, so there is less money for everything else. UW-Madison’s takeaway of the Regents’ Job Budget = 40% to be distributed over two years. A. Baha Balantekin (ABB) asked if there were any new comments in the budget about open access? KF: open access is extremely important. It is blurred in this context, because it indicates that the Libraries do not need to increase the acquisition budget. This may be a question to bring to Academic Senate in order to offset high database costs. EVG emphasized the movement to increase Scholarly Communication. There was general discussion about vendors’ increased database prices, and how the Libraries could address this.

  3. Update on campus library storage

    Ed Van Gemert (EVG) discussed a number of initiatives that were presented to Campus Planning. We did not get the facility we asked for most recently. The original goal was $10 million; since that time, the total expenditure has been capped at $2.5 million. UW-owned land in Verona business park has been proposed, we are working with Facilities Planning & Management. We have a land purchase agreement with contractor, but we need to go through the enumeration process. The money is there, in part from private donors, but it will a bureaucratic process; to get the budget approved, etc. Memorial Library is at “working” capacity. There is room in other campus libraries. Mills Music Library is at full capacity. State budget “freeze” proposed by some could put the kibosh on the storage project. A concern is that we cannot modernize the library without more space. EVG estimates this proposed facility will buy us 5–10 years. KF spoke about the plateau of the print collection; there is an aggressive de-duplication process under way, and more emphasis on electronic books and journals. EVG adds that open publishing is also having an effect on the leveling off of print acquisitions. More faculty are creating their own materials for courses. KF mentioned that even with the move to electronic resources, there is still a place for special and scholarly collections.

  4. Review of the FY11 Library collection budget

    Richard Reeb (RR): If current allocations to subject lines are maintained, we would overallocate by half a million dollars. Had to pull back to remain within budget limits, the result of which is a reduction in expenditures. All subject lines were reduced by 8% this year ($460,000); the effects will not be felt until 2011. A careful review of serials/subscriptions means that we are in process of cancelling several hundred journals. Books/monographs, purchased title-by-title. Campus imposed budget cuts on almost every unit; had to make cuts in personnel and collection budget that totaled $190,135. Big Ten Media revenue covered last year’s reductions. At that time we decided to supplement subject lines, but those funds have run out. Electronic resources are expanding, and their prices increasing: last year’s expenses for electronic resources exceeded $1 million. Access fees mean that you pay for a database and pay to retain that resource or else figure out how to mount the data locally. Databases that are static have a small access fee. Compare this to JSTOR: $30,000/year.

    2 years ago, UW–Madison negotiated a contract for thirteen databases (abstracts and indexes) to be paid out over 3 years. Access fees will continue but other fee will not. Major resources will increase their costs, including Elsevier, Wiley Blackwell, and American Chemical Society. ABB: cuts in resources have been happening for years. What are the alternatives? RR: staff reductions; library hour reductions have already been put in place. J. Pfotenhauer asked about CIC; can they negotiate with publishers/present a united front? RR: CIC is doing this; has been able to negotiate multi-year contracts, a process took over a year to get in place. Publishers refuse to consider flat rates. Because each database may have exclusive offerings, one database cannot necessarily replace another. D. Jacobsohn: Is there a way to negotiate nature of scholarly journals? Need to focus on revamping tenure expectations? Lisa Saywell mentioned that libraries are not the only institutions dealing with this; other entities are powerful players. Tim Allen: creating his own material; distributing powerpoints for students. Faculty will do this more and more. EVG: Shifts that may be happening, away from print, call for advanced library outreach to academic departments.

  5. Election of ULC representatives to the Campus Planning Committee and the Memorial Library Committee

    Campus Planning: Tim Allen will continue for the fall semester; John Pfotenhauer will take over in spring. Memorial Library Committee: Ernesto Livorni will serve.

My Accounts arrowarrow