The Electronic Information Resources Committee (EIRC) met monthly throughout the year. At each meeting committee members brought forward for consideration new titles in their subject areas or on behalf of other members of the library system. Warren Holder, Electronic Information Resources Coordinator, informed the committee about negotiations with various vendors, licensing considerations, consortial developments which involved University of Toronto Libraries (UTL) and kept us abreast of the progress of the Canadian National Site Licensing Project. Sharon Brown, Head, Reference, Robarts Library, reported regularly on orders in process, new titles ordered, items being mounted for testing and funds for electronic resources.
Guests attended many of EIRC's monthly meetings. Some made single visits to present titles which they wished to have considered for purchase while others attended regularly to keep themselves apprised of the committee's activities and decisions. Many requested that they be added to the EIRC distribution list. Since February 2001 EIRC has been particularly pleased to welcome Edward Schlauch, Head, Serials Department as a regular guest at our meetings.
In January 2001, the committee welcomed Sara McDowell, newly appointed Coordinator of Digital Acquisitions. Via the chair of Library Council we requested that the position of Coordinator, Digital Acquisitions be added officially to the EIRC membership in an ex officio capacity.
EIRC continues to consider a wide variety of digital resources each month. Of those considered only some are recommended for purchase to the Chief Librarian. Electronic monograph collections, journals, journal indexes, full text document collections and catalogue records for electronic resources acquired for addition to UTL's OPAC were among the items recommended in 2000-2001.
During the course of the year a number of campus libraries and departments offered to make significant financial contributions towards the purchase of several important items. The joint purchases, made possible through the generosity of the Business Information Centre, the Department of Chemistry and its Library, FIS Inforum, Erindale College Library, the Pratt Library and OISE/UT permitted the desired items to be made available to patrons quite quickly.
At the request of the Chief Librarian, the chair of the committee established a list of items considered for purchase in 2000-2001 (Appendix I) in July 2000. The list is updated after each meeting and distributed to EIRC members via the EIRC distribution list as a word document. It is also available to committee members on the web. The list includes individual titles as well as collections of journals, monographs, indexes, etc. Since July 2000 48 items have been added to the list. Of those, approximately 25 were recommended for purchase and approximately 21 have been mounted on the library's network or made available via the web to the University community.
Also at the request of the Chief Librarian, in July 2000, EIRC created a retrospective list of the items which were considered for purchase in 1999-2000. Of the items considered last year, 90 were recommended for purchase. A recent check of the 1999-2000 list indicates that 361 have been mounted on the library's network or made available to the University community on the web.
Ever cognizant of EIRC's growing list of recommended titles and the need for additional funds to purchase them, EIRC is aware that cancellation of some print resources could liberate funds for direction towards those purchases. Thus, EIRC invited Carole Moore and Michael Rosenstock to attend its September 2000 meeting to discuss possible cancellation of print copies of items which University of Toronto Libraries currently receive both in print and electronically.
Following discussions with the Chief Librarian and the Head of Collection Development, the committee developed Suggested Guidelines for Cancellation of Print Indexes & Abstracts. The Suggested Guidelines (Appendix II) were forwarded to Library Council for consideration at its March 2001 meeting and are intended to provide guidance and procedures for the cancellation, where appropriate, of some print indexes and abstracts which the library system receives both in print and electronically. As well, the Suggested Guidelines establish a framework, timeline and procedure for the review of electronic indexes and abstracts once they have been mounted for approximately one year. Library Council indicated that the Suggested Guidelines had merit and agreed they should be forwarded, with a few modifications, to the Council of Campus Libraries and the Task Force on Collection Management for a response.
The committee also spent considerable time revising EIRC's Policies and Guidelines for the Collection, Access, Preservation and Storage of Electronic Information Resources. The Policies and Guidelines have been forwarded to Library Council for review in April 2001. Elaine Goettler ably coordinated this effort which has been outstanding on the Committee's agenda since 1997.
In closing, on behalf of the committee, I would like to thank those members of the University of Toronto library community who have participated directly or indirectly in EIRC's efforts during 2000-2001. In addition, I would like to thank all members of the committee for their considerable work during the year. A special vote of thanks is also due to Elaine Goettler, who laboured valiantly over the many revisions and changes to EIRC's Policies and Guidelines.
Appendix I: List of Items Considered by EIRC, July 2000 - July 2001
Appendix II:Suggested Guidelines for the Cancellation of Print Indexes & Abstracts, March 2001
Appendix III: EIRC Members, 2000 - 2001
Sandra Langlands - Chair, EIRC
April 10, 2001.
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