Sustainable Collection Services®

With Sustainable Collection Services, you can:

Data from GreenGlass

Get actionable data using GreenGlass®

A library shared space

Share, archive or remove monographs to transform valuable library space

Group of students collaborating together to resource electronic media from the library

Accelerate shared print management efforts

Get actionable data from GreenGlass

GreenGlass provides collection visualization tools with optional data overlays to give you new insights. It also provides:

  • A multi-faceted query builder for developing preservation and withdrawal scenarios
  • Online lists of items that match the parameters of any query with SCS deselection metadata
  • Actionable lists of items that can be exported in Microsoft Excel

Your GreenGlass database contains:

  • Your library’s bibliographic and item level data—with live links to your OPAC
  • Your library’s usage data—including circulation, re-shelving counts, reading room loans
  • WorldCat holdings data—for your peer libraries, your state, your country, the world
  • HathiTrust Digital Library holdings—Public Domain and In-Copyright
  • CHOICE Review and CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title flags
  • Customized title protection rules

Learn more about GreenGlass by viewing our tutorials

Computer displaying the GreenGlass logo

Transform valuable library space for collaboration

Share, archive or remove monographs to transform valuable library space

Adapting old stacks to new spaces for study or collaboration can actually extend your reach to patrons and rejuvenate your community. Intelligent deselection through Sustainable Collection Services (SCS) ensures that you establish appropriate criteria for your library's weeding or shared print project.

See the "Library space planning" section of our bibliography

Here is our process for supporting your deselection project

Step 1: Hold a planning session to set goals for your project

Step 2: Upload catalog data to our data center. You send us a catalog extract via FTP.

Step 3: Cleanse and normalize catalog data. During this step, we:

  • Identify and fix anomalies
  • Look up OCLC record numbers as needed
  • Map data to SCS database fields
  • Identify and report data remediation opportunities

Step 4: Match catalog records to external data sets. Data sets include:

  • OCLC WorldCat
  • Other library data sets (in group projects)
  • Hathi Trust Digital Library
  • Authoritative Title Lists

Step 5: Load data into the GreenGlass web application

Step 6: Analyze the collection and model scenarios. You and your staff use GreenGlass to analyze your collection and model print scenarios. OCLC staff perform custom analysis as needed.

Step 7: Produce withdrawal and preservation candidate lists

Step 8: Review lists and edit criteria. As you adjust criteria---for example, per subject area or location---you become more comfortable with criteria you choose.

Step 9: Modify and/or approve withdrawal and preservation lists

Step 10: Transfer books and update catalog records. Common resolutions include:

  • Transfer books to storage facility or archive
  • Recycle, donate or discard books
  • Update catalog records in batch
  • Update your OCLC holdings through batchload

Accelerate shared print management efforts

Academic and research libraries around the world are implementing programs to share the responsibility and costs of maintaining print collections. Driving this change:

  • A growing shift in scholarly attention from print to electronic formats means that low-use retrospective print collections are perceived to deliver less value.
  • Competing demands for library space favor teaching, learning, and collaboration vs. "warehouse of books."
  • The universe of institutions with both the mandate and the capacity to support long-term print preservation is shrinking.
  • As the return on investment in local print collections diminishes, libraries seek to externalize print operations to shared repositories.

SCS supports shared print initiatives both large and small.

Components of a group project

Shared print projects involve working with data from multiple libraries. The size of a group project can vary from as few as two or three libraries up to several dozen. The complexity of a project will vary, depending on its size; on the participants’ previous history of collaboration; on the consistency of their respective data management practices; on the scope of the project; and other factors. An overview of group project components follows:

  1. Planning meeting(s): At the outset of a project, it is essential to bring together key players from each library to develop a project scope, strategy, and timeline. This can be done in person or via conference call, and typically involves project leaders, systems librarians, representatives from collections and someone who knows the data well (often a cataloger).
  2. Data delivered to SCS: Each participant library will provide SCS with bibliographic, item, and circulation data for all of its in-scope monographs. This data is then filtered, cleansed, and normalized.
  3. Group data set: SCS compiles all of the normalized data from participant libraries into a single database, and computes various group-level tallies and matches. At that point, the group-wide data set is loaded to GreenGlass for Groups (G3).
  4. Scenario development: In G3, an unlimited number of group-wide retention scenarios can be modeled and discussed. Retention scenarios are constructed from a wide array of parameters including: archiving thresholds (number of copies to retain); publication year; usage levels; and overlap tallies. Many combinations are possible, and developing scenarios that balance risk and yield appropriately is perhaps the most important task in any shared print project. These modeling exercises will help inform shared retention agreements, and improve each library’s understanding of what can be safely deselected and what must be retained.
  5. Allocation of retention commitments: Once criteria are finalized and the group has achieved consensus on the retention scenario that will be adopted, SCS allocates retention commitments to each of the member libraries. In group projects, deselection benefits and responsibilities must be shared equitably, or at least in some manner agreed by the group. Deciding which libraries may withdraw and which must retain certain titles depends on a number of variables, including how many copies the group seeks to retain, which library holds which titles, size of collection, space needs, and other factors.
  6. Retention commitments loaded to GreenGlass: In preparation for member libraries to take local action, each library’s GreenGlass account is updated to reflect the group’s retention agreement. Member libraries can then generate lists of items that they are responsible for retaining, and corresponding lists of items that are ‘safe’ to weed.
  7. Ongoing data management: Although new titles are acquired each year, circulation continues to occur, and other libraries are adjusting their collections, most groups find that their SCS data set can serve for up to two years without modification.

The SCS role in group projects can vary, but our key priorities include:

  1. Managing the data: SCS validates, normalizes, augments and compiles the group data to make it as comprehensive and reliable as it can be.
  2. Providing tools to enable the group to interact with its data: SCS has created GreenGlass for Groups specifically for shared print programs, to assist with visualization, modeling, communication and prediction.
  3. Ensuring project success: SCS convenes and facilitates meetings, makes presentations in person and by webinar, helps communicate with stakeholders, supports project managers, runs custom queries and reports and whatever else is needed to achieve your group’s objectives.

GreenGlass Group Functionality

GreenGlass group functionality employs visualizations and modeling tools that allow groups of libraries to:

  • understand their shared collection with respect to overlap, subject dispersion and usage
  • experiment with various retention scenarios, and estimate the impact on each participant library
  • commit to specific retention agreements, with confidence in and comprehension of the outcome

GreenGlass group functionality employs query tools and item lists that allow individual libraries to:

  • protect the right books - and thereby share responsibility for the collective collection
  • downsize print monographs collections, knowing that long-term access to the content has been assured

SCS shared-print projects

Sustainable Collection Services provides tools and services to help manage, share, archive or remove monographs to transform valuable library space. GreenGlass is a purpose-built, interactive application that allows you to explore your print collection.

Service availability

  • Sustainable Collection Services shared collection management service

    Available in the Americas, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom

Learn more

Past and recorded events

10 October 2019

How to responsibly manage print collections: A demonstration of GreenGlass

See all Sustainable Collection services events »