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Working together in difficult times: Challenges for academic libraries Sally Curry Research Information Network JIBS Conference York, 2 December 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "Working together in difficult times: Challenges for academic libraries Sally Curry Research Information Network JIBS Conference York, 2 December 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 Working together in difficult times: Challenges for academic libraries Sally Curry Research Information Network JIBS Conference York, 2 December 2010

2 Budgets and finance Searching for savings New strategies? Libraries and their value

3 1. Budgets and finance

4 The last decade for UK libraries

5

6 US and UK compared Survey in late 2009 showed both UK and US libraries expecting cuts next year

7 US and UK compared … and UK librarians are even more gloomy about the prospects in 2 years time

8 2. Searching for savings

9 Where and how to make cuts? Staffing Services Infrastructure Content

10 Staffing expenditure has risen in real terms by 31% in UK university libraries 45% in research- intensive universities highest as a proportion of expenditure (c 60%) in colleges significant differences between individual libraries (30%->70%) but academic staff and student numbers have risen faster

11 Staff, service and infrastructure Staff Doing more with fewer staff pressure from university management some thought being given to restructuring and re-engineering but recruitment freezes and not replacing staff who leave are the currently- favoured options Service Closely related to staffing – opening hours and enquiry services and user information skills training Infrastructure Many libraries already cutting plans in both building developments and in IT projects

12 Content As proportion of overall library expenditure, relatively stable at 34% highest in older universities: Expenditure on content in UK has risen 34% in real terms +52% in research-intensive universities -2% in new universities

13 Content: books expenditure on books has fallen, from c.12% to 9% of overall library expenditure power of the student voice in demanding books and other library services e-books the future?

14 Content: journals expenditure on journals has risen dramatically in research-intensive universities different picture for recently-created universities and colleges

15 Content: journals journal expenditure has risen on average from 15% to 19% of overall library expenditure over 24% in older universities >70% of expenditure on information resources in many universities sustainability vs users expectations future of big deals?

16 Cuts in content? cuts in monographs, other print books, and printed serials the most favoured cuts in e-journals and e-books least favoured

17 Content: new areas and activities information literacy how well is library-based training resourced and co- ordinated with others? open access repositories payment of open access publication fees data curation new skills and capabilities digital preservation

18 3. New strategies? opportunities to rethink what the library is and what it means….

19 New strategies for content? from just-in-case to just-in time? from librarian-controlled to user- generated acquisitions? from hybrid to e-only? drivers and constraints cyber-infrastructure? consortial collection development? cloud-sourced research collections? role of Special Collections?

20 4. The value of libraries

21 Some issues with value it means different things to different people describing perceived value and demonstrating value are different activities available data correlation is not causation……..

22 Usage and cost as usage goes up, so cost per use has fallen downloads of e-jnls rose by 160% in UK and % in research-intensive universities cost per download fell by 40% 60% in research-intensive universities big differences between individual libraries

23 Expenditure and usage levels of expenditure in individual libraries do seem to correlate with volume of downloads two journal platforms and COUNTER figures as reported by libraries

24 Usage and outcomes usage correlates closely with research outcomes PhDs awarded research grants and contract income papers published

25 E-journal investment, use and research outcomes Investment drives use Direct links between use and research success weak as the two are distant from each other There are indicators that usage does correlate closely with research outcomes

26 Thank you Sally Curry

27 References Challenges for libraries in difficult economic times. RIN in association with SCONUL information-resources/challenges-academic-libraries-difficult- economic-http://www.rin.ac.uk/our-work/using-and-accessing- information-resources/challenges-academic-libraries-difficult- economic- Trends in the finances of UK higher education libraries A RIN report based on SCONUL library statistics. research/trends-finances-uk-higher-education-libraries-1999 CIBER (2009) The economic downturn and libraries, survey findings Measuring library impact on learning at the University of Huddersfield, Sue White and Graham Stone. All the RIN reports and briefings are downloadable from the RIN website If you would like to be added to the RIN mailing list, please get in touch:

28 RIN References Taking Our Pulse: The OCLC Research Survey of Special Collections and Archives E-journals: their use, value and impact ejournalswww.rin.ac.uk/use- ejournals Transitions in scholarly communication focuses on changes taking place in the world of scholarly communications and their impact on research scholarly-communicationshttp://www.rin.ac.uk/resources/publishing/transitions- scholarly-communications Scholarly books and journals at risk: Responding to the challenges of a changing economy All the RIN reports and briefings are downloadable from the RIN website If you would like to be added to the RIN mailing list, please get in touch:


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