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How will changing trends in technology, publishing and library budgets affect the role of the Electronic Resources Librarian?

Kathrin Dodds Texas Tech University Libraries August 19, 2010
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Kathrin Dodds

on 18 August 2010

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Transcript of How will changing trends in technology, publishing and library budgets affect the role of the Electronic Resources Librarian?

How will changing trends in technology, publishing and library budgets affect the role of the Electronic Resources Librarian? Kathrin Dodds
Texas Tech University Libraries
August 19, 2010 The past decade has brought enormous change to libraries, especially in the areas of technology, publishing and library budgets. These three areas are closely intertwined. For many years, the explosive growth of publishing and the decline (in real dollars) of library budgets have resulted in increased pressure on library selectors not only to find the best resources for the library’s users but also to find those resources at the lowest possible price. The proliferation and corresponding popularity of electronic resources have only increased that pressure, but at the same time, technology has actually offered a way out of the problem.
The ability to provide resources electronically means that patrons can get what they need instantaneously, at the same time as other patrons and from the comfort of their own home or office.
How will Technology affect the role of the ER Librarian?
Technological innovation in academic libraries has significantly influenced the ways in which users find and use library services and collections.
A successful ER librarian must have sufficient technical expertise (or have access to those with that expertise) in order to troubleshoot, to evaluate new resources, and to analyze how well products perform.
How will Budget affect the role of the ER Librarian?
Electronic resources are not just electronic versions of print journals. The importance of the selection process is reinforced!
Constant assessment of resources and evaluation of patron needs are critical. Many issues need to be considered:
content
access
timeliness
sustainability
usability
pricing strucutre
How will Publishing affect the role of the ER Librarian?
Print publishing is skyrocketing.
Sales revenues have declined. The reality of dealing with publishers in the electronic resource environment is that libraries and publishers have to have more interaction with each other beyond the selling phase.

Contracts for the acquisition and utilization of electronic resources will become both more common and complex.
How will the ER Librarian cope? Resources Used
Council on Library and Information Resources. 2008. No brief candle: reconceiving research libraries for the 21st century. Washington, DC: Council on Library and Information Resources.
Fisher, William. “The Electronic Resources Librarian Position: A Public Services Phenomenon?” Library Collections, Acquisitions, & Technical Services, 27 (2003) p. 3-17.
Goetsch, Lori A.. “Reinventing Our Work: New and Emerging Roles for Academic Librarians.” Journal of Library Administration, Vol. 48 (2) 2008: p. 157-172.
Gregory, Vicki L. Selecting and Managing Electronic Resources: A How-To-Do-It Manual for Librarians. New York: Neal-Schuman Publishers, Inc., 2006.
Schoplin, Katharine, ed. A Handbook for Media Librarians. London: Facet Publishing, 2008.
Questions??? Electronic resources and the tools needed to use them means higher pricing. The demand for accountability challenges libraries to demonstrate their impact through both quantitative and qualitative assessment. There will be change. Be prepared through continuous learning.
Maintain a high degree of flexibility.
Be comfortable with ambiguity.
Keep aware of users needs and desires, along with library mission.
Become a crisis negotiator and diplomat.
The role of the ER Librarian is constantly evolving.
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