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Maine Shared Collections Cooperative to expand shared print project with OCLC's Sustainable Collection Services

DUBLIN, Ohio, 23 January 2019—The Maine Shared Collections Cooperative is expanding its work with OCLC's GreenGlass on a shared print monographs retention project to analyze the group's collections and ensure that copies of important print works are identified, retained and shared among group members.

The Maine Shared Collections Cooperative (MSCC), founded by eight of Maine's largest libraries along with Maine InfoNet, the state's consortium, worked with Sustainable Collection Services to implement a shared approach to the management of print collections in the state in 2013. That four-year project, funded in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, covered legacy print monograph titles that were published or acquired before 2003.

"This shared-print retention project is important because all libraries are doing independent withdrawal and weeding projects, and we want to make sure that we don't lose valuable content in the midst of that work," said Matthew Revitt, Special Collections and Maine Shared Collections Librarian, University of Maine. "We protect titles for the patrons and users of libraries in Maine primarily, but obviously that means that patrons outside of the state will benefit as well."

The new project, which begins this month, has been expanded to include analysis of holdings from 20 additional libraries. The 28 institutions participating include both academic and public libraries, which is unusual for a shared-print project, and will focus on titles published or acquired between 2003 and 2012. The new MSCC project is primarily self-funded by the participating libraries, but generous support from the Maine State Library has allowed smaller public libraries to participate this time around. The new project is expanding to build on the success of the 2013 project with Sustainable Collection Services.

"We've got the same eight libraries from the original analysis, and we've added new libraries from Fort Kent in the north to Wells in the south of the state, and ranging in collection sizes from 1 million print monographs in one library to 12,000 in another," said Revitt. "Not only did these libraries see the work of the original libraries as successful, but they also wanted to contribute to make sure they are also protecting titles in Maine. No single library can take on the commitment to ensure these materials remain accessible; it really takes a cooperative effort like this. We're really pleased that additional libraries are participating in this project."

"We look forward to continuing our work with MSCC," said Mary Sauer-Games, OCLC Vice President, Global Product Management. "The libraries that comprise MSCC are committed to ensuring that print monographs of significance are preserved and protected for the people of Maine. Working with Sustainable Collection Services, MSCC will continue to make cost-effective, evidence-based decisions to share print monographs and manage their collections cooperatively."

Sustainable Collection Services (SCS) provides tools and services to help manage, share, archive or remove monographs to ensure there are sufficient copies for future use. Among the tools used by SCS is GreenGlass, a web application that allows single libraries and library groups to explore and visualize their collections in the context of collective collections. This analysis supports informed collection management decisions.

The MSCC project focuses first on shared retention scenarios, based on the bibliographic, circulation, and item data provided by MSCC. Retention models will be defined at the group level, and treatment of those titles will be decided collaboratively. Once retention commitments have been identified, individual libraries will be able to act independently and according to local needs on other holdings, transferring or withdrawing as needed.

MSCC was one of the first groups to work with Sustainable Collection Services on a shared print monographs retention project and has registered its retention commitments in WorldCat, the world's most comprehensive database of information about library collections. MSCC registered 1.4 million commitments for retention following the 2013 project, which is nearly 1 monograph for every resident of Maine.

More about the Maine Shared Collections Cooperative is on the website, along with a list of participating member institutions.

More about GreenGlass is on the OCLC website.

About OCLC

OCLC is a nonprofit global library cooperative providing shared technology services, original research and community programs so that libraries can better fuel learning, research and innovation. Through OCLC, member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the most comprehensive global network of data about library collections and services. Libraries gain efficiencies through OCLC's WorldShare, a complete set of library management applications and services built on an open, cloud-based platform. It is through collaboration and sharing of the world’s collected knowledge that libraries can help people find answers they need to solve problems. Together as OCLC, member libraries, staff and partners make breakthroughs possible.

OCLC, WorldCat, WorldShare, GreenGlass and Sustainable Collection Services are trademarks and/or service marks of OCLC, Inc. Third-party product, service and business names are trademarks and/or service marks of their respective owners.


  • Bob Murphy

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