Digital Collections at the Center for Research Libraries

Download Digital Collections at the Center for Research Libraries

Post on 05-Mar-2017

214 views

Category:

Documents

2 download

TRANSCRIPT

  • This article was downloaded by: [Stony Brook University]On: 29 October 2014, At: 03:35Publisher: RoutledgeInforma Ltd Registered in England and Wales Registered Number: 1072954Registered office: Mortimer House, 37-41 Mortimer Street, London W1T 3JH,UK

    Slavic & East EuropeanInformation ResourcesPublication details, including instructions forauthors and subscription information:http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/wsee20

    Digital Collections at theCenter for Research LibrariesJames T. Simon aa Center for Research Libraries , 6050 SouthKenwood Avenue, Chicago, IL, 60637, USAPublished online: 20 Oct 2008.

    To cite this article: James T. Simon (2002) Digital Collections at the Center forResearch Libraries, Slavic & East European Information Resources, 3:1, 87-89, DOI:10.1300/J167v03n01_10

    To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/J167v03n01_10

    PLEASE SCROLL DOWN FOR ARTICLE

    Taylor & Francis makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of all theinformation (the Content) contained in the publications on our platform.However, Taylor & Francis, our agents, and our licensors make norepresentations or warranties whatsoever as to the accuracy, completeness,or suitability for any purpose of the Content. Any opinions and viewsexpressed in this publication are the opinions and views of the authors, andare not the views of or endorsed by Taylor & Francis. The accuracy of theContent should not be relied upon and should be independently verified withprimary sources of information. Taylor and Francis shall not be liable for anylosses, actions, claims, proceedings, demands, costs, expenses, damages,and other liabilities whatsoever or howsoever caused arising directly orindirectly in connection with, in relation to or arising out of the use of theContent.

    This article may be used for research, teaching, and private study purposes.Any substantial or systematic reproduction, redistribution, reselling, loan,

    http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/wsee20http://www.tandfonline.com/action/showCitFormats?doi=10.1300/J167v03n01_10http://dx.doi.org/10.1300/J167v03n01_10

  • sub-licensing, systematic supply, or distribution in any form to anyone isexpressly forbidden. Terms & Conditions of access and use can be found athttp://www.tandfonline.com/page/terms-and-conditions

    Dow

    nloa

    ded

    by [

    Ston

    y B

    rook

    Uni

    vers

    ity]

    at 0

    3:35

    29

    Oct

    ober

    201

    4

    http://www.tandfonline.com/page/terms-and-conditions

  • Digital Collectionsat the Center for Research Libraries

    James T. Simon

    ABSTRACT. The Center for Research Libraries (CRL) has been assess-ing its strategies for providing services relating to electronic resources.Just as CRL meets a need for preserving newspapers that are overlookedby commercial micropublishers, for example, it can also play a role in dig-itizing underrepresented but important resources that merit wider attentionor would better serve the scholarly community as electronic resources.Using this principle, CRL currently has two major digitization projectsunderway and several others under consideration. A possible additionalrole for the Center in the future is as an aggregator of digital collections.[Article copies available for a fee from The Haworth Document Delivery Ser-vice: 1-800-HAWORTH. E-mail address: Website: 2002 by The Haworth Press, Inc. All rights re-served.]

    KEYWORDS. Center for Research Libraries, CRL, area studies, digi-tal, electronic, World Wide Web, Brazilian Government DocumentDigitization Project, Digital South Asia Library, DSAL, preservation,access

    The Center for Research Libraries (CRL) has in recent years joined thescores of research institutions embarking on electronic resource initiatives.With two major digitization projects underway (The Brazilian GovernmentDocument Digitization Project and the Digital South Asia Library) and severalothers under consideration (including a Russian prerevolutionary journal ac-

    James T. Simon is Program Officer for Area Studies, Center for Research Libraries, 6050South Kenwood Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637 USA (E-mail: simon@crlmail.uchicago.edu).

    Slavic & East European Information Resources, Vol. 3(1) 2002 2002 by The Haworth Press, Inc. All rights reserved. 87

    Dow

    nloa

    ded

    by [

    Ston

    y B

    rook

    Uni

    vers

    ity]

    at 0

    3:35

    29

    Oct

    ober

    201

    4

    http://www.HaworthPress.com

  • cess project proposed to the Slavic and East European Microform Project),CRL is rapidly becoming an important player within the digital environment.

    In 1998, CRL convened a task force to evaluate its role with respect to elec-tronic collection resources and services. The group examined CRLs uniquerole in the research library community and its potential responsibility in creat-ing, delivering, and preserving electronic resources for its membership. Thistask force envisioned CRL filling an important niche in the electronic market-place by providing programs and services that lie within the strengths ofCRLs mission and specialized collections. As CRL undergoes a transition ofleadership, it is beginning to assess its strategies for providing enhanced ser-vices to its membership, including those services relating to electronic re-sources.

    MEETING UNMET NEEDS FOR SCHOLARLY RESOURCES

    It is clear that digitization and provision of electronic resources are costlyventures, and therefore cost-benefit analysis must be applied. But just as CRLmeets a need for preserving newspapers that are overlooked by commercialmicropublishers, CRL can play a role in digitizing underrepresented but im-portant resources that merit wider attention or would better serve the scholarlycommunity as electronic resources. The Centers membership overwhelm-ingly supports the collection of unique or rarely held material, a principle thatmay extend to digital resources as well.

    Another prospective role for the Center is that of an aggregator of digitalcollections. In many instances, single scholars or institutions may be unable tocreate important digital collections due to institutional priorities, lack of exper-tise, or a host of other reasons. CRLs strength as a cooperative institution canfacilitate collaboration among stakeholders to develop new electronic re-sources. As an example, CRL has provided a home for the Digital South AsiaLibrary (DSAL), a collaboration of institutions in the U.S., Europe, and SouthAsia itself. The projects collections and resources have been combined from avariety of different institutions and presented in a centralized coherent format.This model works particularly well with area studies and subject-based collec-tions.

    Finally, there are a number of unresolved issues relating to the digital li-brary arena where CRL could play an important role. For example, CRL maybe able to serve as an archive for the storage and preservation of electronic ma-terial, much as it does with its print collection.

    88 SLAVIC & EAST EUROPEAN INFORMATION RESOURCES

    Dow

    nloa

    ded

    by [

    Ston

    y B

    rook

    Uni

    vers

    ity]

    at 0

    3:35

    29

    Oct

    ober

    201

    4

  • PRESERVATION AND/OR ACCESS?

    Since its inception as a repository for lesser-used scholarly material, CRLhas had as its priority long-term preservation of material for future scholarship.It is not surprising, therefore, that CRL has taken a careful approach to thelong-term preservation of its nascent digital collections through regular andmultiple backups and a commitment to migration of information to new tech-nology. While acknowledging the continuing debate over digitization as apreservation strategy, CRL has been able to tackle the issue successfully by re-lying on projects that combine the unprecedented access of electronic collec-tions with the long-term stability of microform preservation.

    The Brazilian Government Document Digitization Project began as an ef-fort to collect and preserve via microfilm all Brazilian ministerial and presi-dential reports. Subsequently, the material was digitized, indexed, and madeavailable through the World Wide Web. This process ensured that a central-ized collection of material would remain available over time while also expos-ing the material to an audience much wider than CRLs own membership.Similarly, while maintaining a robust preservation strategy for its digital re-sources, DSAL has also championed the use of microform as the long-termchoice of preservation. The project has purchased a microfilm scanner (housedin Chennai, India) to use to digitize much of its material and is collaboratingwith the South Asia Microform Project (SAMP) in filming many of the titlesDSAL intends to scan.

    Finally, CRL is supporting the long-term preservation of print materialsthat have been converted into electronic format. CRL and JSTOR entered intoa partnership in April 2000 to ensure that print copies of the JSTOR titles aredeposited at the Center.

    As the digital landscape continually changes and brings new challenges toconfront, CRLs path is still very much uncharted. However, it has taken itsfirst few steps along the road by merging traditional missions and principleswith new ideas and technology. The Center is committed to serving its mem-bership and the scholarly community in whatever permutation research re-sources may come.

    For more information on any of the resources mentioned in this article,please visit CRLs Web site (http://wwwcrl.uchicago.edu/) and select Cur-rent Special Projects.

    The Internet 89

    Dow

    nloa

    ded

    by [

    Ston

    y B

    rook

    Uni

    vers

    ity]

    at 0

    3:35

    29

    Oct

    ober

    201

    4

    http://wwwcrl.uchicago.edu/

Recommended

View more >