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LHCAB July 2020 Meeting

The Library Hub Community Advisory Board met online on 1st July. Tracey Middleton, Collections and Digital Development Manager at Bangor University was welcomed as a new member.  A summary of discussions follows:

  • A list of institutions which have not yet engaged with the NBK was circulated and Board members agreed to continue to promote the value of contributing data to their contacts, complementing the efforts of Jisc account managers.
  • Updates on service developments for Library Hub Discover, Compare and Cataloguing were provided. These included interface enhancements, data loads, and information about data consolidation and processing, as well as usage statistics.
  • Following the successful launch of the LHCAB retention code initiative the NBK-R codes are already starting to appear in records sent to the NBK. The Board discussed the next steps in utilising this information when it becomes more widespread, and decided it was not useful for it to be displayed in Discover for end users.  The focus should be on developing functionality in Compare where it is relevant for library staff.  We would be interested to receive comments on this decision.
  • There was discussion about the different approaches to search algorithms used in Discover and Compare based on their different use cases which were developed for the original Copac and CCM Tools services. There was agreement that more consistency would be valuable but that developing additional focussed subject search options in Compare would better support collection level analysis.  The Library Hub team will evaluate the potential to incorporate these suggestions in the service development plan.
  • The Board were pleased to hear about the levels of engagement with the recent data quality measures consultation, which will feed into development of a pilot Analyse service in 2021.
  • Consultants are currently engaged in work to progress Plan M, through the Remodelling the UK Library Data Marketplace project. This involves gathering intelligence from stakeholders to inform the development of proposed new models. The Board received an update on interim findings and work packages moving forward.  The timeliness of the project was confirmed, as online delivery dominates, and institutional finances are further squeezed.  The need for high quality data is imperative but different institutional perspectives reflect different collections and priorities.
  • The Board debated the current hiatus in developing a national approach to shared monograph retention. It was agreed that the retention code initiative could be a valuable tool in pushing forward in this area once it has been more widely adopted and becomes trusted.  A coalition of the willing could be convened to drive momentum further, following discussion with key stakeholders.
  • Board members shared perspectives on the current HE landscape and the role of Library Hub in supporting libraries into the future. The strong drive to digital, pressures on space and financial constraints featured as well as the issue of print stock which is still on loan to final year students and must be recovered to avoid serious losses to collections.  The value of getting a national picture of issues was flagged in order to inform strategies for the future.
  • Stakeholder engagement is more vital than ever as face to face events have been cancelled and are unlikely to return soon. The Library Hub team outlined plans to develop some alternative online provision in the Autumn.  Board members pointed out that online events could result in wider engagement as being far more accessible and will continue to be valued by the sector.

Dates for meetings in the 2020/21 academic year will be confirmed.

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