can personalised be upscaled?

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Presentation at Personalised libraries in HE symposium, Homerton College, Cambridge March 22nd 2011.


  • 1. Can personalised be upscaled?
    Tim Wales
    Associate Director (E-Strategy), Library Services
    Royal Holloway, University of London
    Personalised libraries in HE symposium, Cambridge (22/03/2011)
  • 2. Royal Holloway...
    Not a boutique library!
  • 3. Chapter work in progress!
  • 4. 1 minute interaction timewhen you see this icon!
  • 5. My beliefs
    Technology can help every library offer a boutique service
    Web technologies and associated data already offer mass personalization at scale
    There are comparable commercial services that we must benchmark against
    Social media has empowered our users to expect to be in control
  • 6. 2 RHUL case studies
    User driven e-book acquisition
    (Demand driven acquisition)
    Discovery systems
  • 7. DDA and the boutique model


    Source: Priestner & Tilley (2010)
  • 8. 3 suppliers evaluated for a pilot
  • 9. Why EBL?

    Best user interface
    Free 5 minute preview access of every book
    Flexible configuration options e.g. excluding titles
    Ability to specify # of loans before purchase triggered
    Various purchase approval options
    No upfront payment required
    Works with SFX and EZProxy
    (Horrendous invoicing problems)
    July 2010 Nov 2010
  • 10. RHUL pilot details
    10,000 funding
    Ran in November 2010
    Some basic weeding of title list
    30,000 EBL records preloaded into Aleph LMS
    Free 5 min preview enabled
    1 day loans (rentals)
    1st 3 clicks = loans, 4th = purchase
    No cap on book purchase price
    (busy time)
    Removing school texts
    Wanted 150,000
    5-15% of book price
    N.B. We deliberately did not market the pilot to test actual user behaviour
  • 11. RHUL pilot results
    50% of titles purchased were already held in print
  • 12. RHUL pilot results
    5% of trial EBL load
    3% of trial EBL load
  • 13. Highly tailored selection by users would librarians have chosen those 37 titles?
    Free 5 minute preview accounted for 33% of use so why not just load in thousands of titles into LMS (= iTunes model)?
    Ratio of loans to purchases chosen unsustainable - do we want mediated option?
    Do boutique libraries need to have their own LMS in order to operate this?
  • 14. 2 RHUL case studies
    User drive e-book acquisition
    (Demand driven acquisition)
    Discovery systems
  • 15. Discovery systems
    A great discovery interface should operate in a mostly self-explanatory way, allowing users to concentrate on selecting and evaluating the resources returned rather than struggling through the search tools that the library provides.
    Explaining the idiosyncrasies of the brand names of the publishers and providers from which we acquire information resources in wholesale often becomes the focus of information literacy and bibliographic instruction.
    Since so many library users consume the products we offer from outside our library buildings, having more intuitive tools to deliver library resources that do not require special training represents a valuable advance in the state of the art.
    The ability to assemble into a single index all the books, journal articles, and other collection components, in my mind, represents one of the most significant breakthroughs in library automation in recent decades.
    Marshall Breeding (2010)
  • 16. Discovery & the boutique model

    Source: Priestner & Tilley (2010)
  • 17. Discovery systems
    Source: Breeding (2010)
  • 18. RHUL Discovery now
    Selected on interface, price and content + Huddersfield feedback
    Software as a service
    8 month implementation
    Includes data from Archive catalogue and IR
    Little customisation possible
    Yet another interface
  • 19. Vanilla interface home
  • 20. Local home
  • 21. RHUL results page
  • 22. Future RHUL Discovery
    = Personalization
  • 23. RHUL Discovery
    Discovery system used by Huddersfield and Liverpool (good interface & price)
    Software as a service
    8 month implementation
    Data from Summon index, LMS, Archive catalogue and IR with Openurl links
    Little customisation possible
    Yet another interface
    No Web 2.0 functions yet
    Discovery layer used by LSE and Swansea (building on our Xerxes experience)
    Open Source (Local install)
    6 month implementation
    Data from Summon API + SFX4 API + Aleph LMS X-Server / restful API
    Much customisation
    Consolidates 3 interfaces
    Web 2.0 functions
  • 24. Vanilla interface home
  • 25. Library home page | Library log-in
    By subject
    By format
    By language
    By type
    Eresources A-Z
    Journals A-Z
    Future interface home
    Guided search
    Includes: archives, audio-visual materials, print and e-books, print and e-journals, exam papers, newspapers and open access research
    Do more
    Contact us
    Book a Library group room
    Check your Library account
    Check your PIN
    Register at Senate House Library
    Search Senate House Library
    Suggest a book/resource
    Top up your printing account
    Tel: 01784 443323
    Feedback form
    There is a delay between resources being entered into the library systems and uploaded to LibrarySearch. If you cannot find printed material you are expecting to see, please try the Library Catalogue
  • 26. Vanilla results page
    Library map
  • 27. Full resource view
    Basic Web 2.0
  • 28. Boutique service benchmark
  • 29. Benchmarking
    • Fast, combined search and browse across all resource types
    • 30. Integrated account management
    • 31. Reviews and ratings
    • 32. Personalised recommendations on homepage and by email
    • 33. Downloadable e-content
    • 34. Regional variations
    • 35. Fast, combined search and some browsing across all resource types
    • 36. Integrated account management and sign-on
    • 37. Reviews and ratings
    • 38. Personalised recommendations on homepage and by email
    • 39. Downloadable e-content
    • 40. Regional variations