Collective Collections

Libraries are embedded in an increasingly complex network of information supply and demand. Our goal is to provide evidence and insight to libraries as they organize collections and services within this changing network environment.

Our research agenda aims to improve our understanding of the factors that guide institutions in their sourcing and scaling choices as they seek maximum impact and efficient provision of library collections and services. Our work explores three related areas:

Publications

    Reflections on Collective Collections

    16 January 2020

    Brian Lavoie, Lorcan Dempsey, Constance Malpas

    Collective collections are the combined holdings of a group of libraries, analyzed and possibly managed as a unified resource. Constructing, understanding, and operationalizing collective collections is an increasingly important aspect of collection management for many libraries. This article presents some general insights about collective collections, drawn from a series of studies conducted by OCLC.

    The US and Canadian Collective Print Book Collection: A 2019 Snapshot

    26 September 2019

    Brian Lavoie

    In this position paper, Lavoie traces the contours of the US and Canadian collective print book collection—the collective print book holdings of all libraries in the US and Canada whose collections are registered in WorldCat. The paper examines the US/Canadian collective print book collection for insight and trends and includes a new rendering of the mega-regional map of US/Canadian Collective Print Book Collections.

    Operationalizing the BIG Collective Collection: A Case Study of Consolidation vs Autonomy

    20 August 2019

    Lorcan Dempsey, Constance Malpas, Mark Sandler

    The proposed framework recommends strategies for advancing the Big Ten Academic Alliance’s (BTAA) collective collections toward a more purposeful coordination of their print collections. It defines four traits of a purposeful collective collection that can also apply broadly to other consortium settings.

    Maple Leaves: Discovering Canada through the Published Record

    21 May 2019

    Brian Lavoie

    OCLC Research identified 10.9 million Canadian publications using WorldCat and mapped this information with Wikidata to trace shifting cultural patterns over time. This report analyzes distinctive features of Canadian publications to examine the Canadian influence on the collective public record.

    What Collaboration Means to Me: Library collaboration is hard; effective collaboration is harder

    19 March 2019

    Lorcan Dempsey

    Dempsey argues that library collaboration is important—especially in a network environment, where scale is key for efficiency and impact—and must be a strategic focus for libraries and partners. Library collaboration is hard; this paper analyzes why and offers suggestions for improvement.

    University Futures, Library Futures: Aligning library strategies with institutional directions

    18 October 2018

    Constance Malpas, Roger Schonfeld, Rona Stein, Lorcan Dempsey, Deanna Marcum

    This report proposes a new library services framework for academic libraries in place of a collections model. This report studies the relationship between emerging library service paradigms and different university settings and surveys the importance of library service areas according to library directors.

    OCLC: Enabling Collaboration and Innovation With and Between Academic Libraries, Nationally and Internationally

    4 April 2018

    Andrew K. Pace

    This chapter, excerpted from Collaboration and the Academic Library, identifies OCLC as an example of academic library cooperation on a global and national scale. It explores OCLC membership and governance structures, cooperative data and services, and reflects on challenges in growing a library cooperative.

    An Exploration of the Irish Presence in the Published Record

    20 February 2018

    Brian Lavoie, Lorcan Dempsey

    OCLC Research identified more than 1.6 million distinct Irish publications using library collections data in WorldCat and mapped this information with DBpedia to trace shifting cultural patterns over time. This report analyzes distinctive features of Irish publications to examine the Irish influence on the collective public record.

    Toward a New Understanding of American Higher Education Institutions: Focus of Educational Offer, Mode of Provision

    19 January 2018

    Rona Stein, PhD, Constance Malpas

    This literature review preview of Toward a New Understanding of American Higher Education Institutions: Focus of Educational Offer, Mode of Provision provides context for the US higher education institution typology that OCLC has developed to support the University Futures, Library Futures project.

    OCLC Research: 2014 Highlights

    3 December 2015

    OCLC Research