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CPA Newsletter #55, Apr 1993

Commission on Preservation and Access

The Commission on Preservation and Access


April 1993

Number 55

Project IBID Completes Planning Phase

A nine-month preliminary planning stage for Project IBID has concluded with nearly all goals accomplished. The project was developed by the College libraries Committee to investigate the viability of a system for reprinting and supplying, on-demand, new copies of copyrighted, out-of-print books for libraries and other buyers (see January 1993 newsletter). Project coordinators David Cohen and Willis Bridegam, College Libraries Committee members, have reported to the Commission the completion of the following actions:

  • Development of a business and marketing study. This plan was prepared by SOLINET’s Preservation Microfilm Manager.
  • Exploration of the technical capabilities of groups interested in working with the project. There was agreement by Cornell University to serve as the production center.
  • Discussions with major publishers regarding reprinting their out-of-print publications. Publishers suggested a need to explore the issue of on-demand publishing and to demonstrate that it could be done for a reasonable price, and offered their support in cooperating with IBID if it is funded as a research and demonstration project.
  • Presentation on the Project IBID system at several librarians’ meetings. A considerable number of individual libraries and library organizations provided support and guidance.
  • Development of a licensing agreement. It became clear that licensing agreements would need to be negotiated individually. However, some progress was made on what these agreements should contain.
  • The identification of possible sources of funding for the demonstration phase. An application for a two-year demonstration project was submitted to Title II, U.S. Department of Education.

The grant application submitted in January 1993 included letters of support from eight university presses and fourteen college head librarians. If the two-year demonstration project is funded and conducted, it is expected that publishers and librarians will have considerable information at hand concerning the economic, distribution, and technology issues involved in reprinting out-of-print books from a digitized database. Publishers and service agencies will be able to gauge extent of the market for out-of-print books and determine a financial breakeven point for scanning and printing copies for resale.

Boorstin, Cline Scheduled to Testify For NEH

Daniel J. Boorstin, former Librarian of Congress, and Nancy Cline, Dean of University Libraries at Pennsylvania State University, have accepted an invitation from The National Humanities Alliance, the Association of Research Libraries, and the Commission to testify before Congress on behalf of appropriations for the National Endowment for the Humanities. The hearings are before the Subcommittee on the Interior and Related Agencies, in the U.S. House of Representatives, scheduled for May 5, 1993.

Scientist-Administrator Teams Move Ahead with Research Agenda

After a year of considerable progress by a group of preservation administrators from key universities and research libraries in the United States and Canada, the Commission has decided to continue support of a science research initiative and host a second invitational workshop in September, 1992. The initiative involves preservation administrators from 16 institutions and four scientists who are developing productive teams with the necessary scope, knowledge and ability to forge a collaborative scientific research agenda to meet preservation decision-making needs at the institutional level.

The second invitational workshop will be held September 15-17, 1993, at Belmont Conference Center, Elkridge, MD. Building on the first workshop in September 1992 and an interim one-day planning meeting in February 1993, the scientists and preservation administrators will further develop the four or five key research efforts determined to be of most value to preservation of collections at this time. Preliminary planning has surfaced the need for basic and applied research within broad areas initially defined as the long-term stability of specific materials (paper and non-paper) in collections; the impact of environmental factors on collections of specific materials; and the impact of specific treatments and processes on collections. The teams also surfaced the need for development of implementation and management tools based on applied scientific findings.

The Commission expects that these collaborative efforts will stimulate the necessary broad-based support to carry forward with a coordinated and useful scientific research agenda.

Participants Preservation administrators Wes Boomgaarden, Ohio State University; Connie Brooks, Stanford University; Sherry Byrne University of Chicago; Margaret Byrnes, National Library of Medicine; Paul Conway, Yale University; Ellen Cunningham-Kruppa, University of Texas at Austin; Richard Frieder, Northwestern University; Janet Gertz, Columbia University; Kenneth Harris, Library of Congress; Jan Merrill-Oldham, University of Connecticut; Carla Montori, University of Michigan; Carolyn Clark Morrow, Harvard University; Barclay Ogden, University of California, Berkeley; James Stroud, Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center; Karen Turko, University of Toronto; Chris Ward, New York State Archives; Scientists James R. Druzik, The Getty Conservation Institute; James M. Reilly, Image Permanence Institute; Donald K. Sebera, Library of Congress; Peter Sparks, Consultant.

States Move Ahead with Cooperative Preservation

Maryland, Kansas Conducting Projects

Maryland’s libraries and archives are the focus of a major project to coordinate preservation planning for the state’s printed and documentary resources. The Statewide Preservation Planning Project is sponsored by the Task Forces to Initiate Preservation Planning in Maryland, a group formed in response to recommendations by the 1990 Governor’s Conference on Libraries and Information Services. The Task Force received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), Division of Preservation and Access which is supporting regional meetings of library professionals, business, community and government leaders; a statewide preservation assessment survey; and a published action plan. The project will be completed in January 1994.

The Kansas Library Network Board also has been awarded an NEH grant to coordinate a statewide preservation plan to focus on preservation of the library and archival resources documenting the state’s history that are found in 315 public libraries, 26 universities, 75 special libraries, 1,000 school libraries and hundreds of local museums, genealogical and historical societies.

NYS Focuses on Architectural Records

Statewide priorities for handling the preservation and access needs of architectural records collections and the creation of a resource group for assistance in the care and management of these collections are expected outcomes of a six-month project, “New York State Architectural Records Needs Assessment Project a Blueprint for Action.” The planning project is being funded by the New York State Program for the Conservation and Preservation of Library Research Materials and sponsored by Syracuse University. Other participants include Columbia, Cornell, the State University of New York (SUNY) at Albany, SUNY at Buffalo, the University of Rochester, and the New York Public Library.

The project includes a seminar, a needs assessment survey, development of individual institutional preservation plans, and identification of group priorities in preparation for a subsequent cooperative proposal to support implementation.

Further information is available from the project director, Martha Hanson, Preservation Administrator, Syracuse University, E.S. Bird Library, Syracuse, NY 13244-2010

New Training in Preservation Strategies

Preservation Training for Directors in Southwest

This spring, the AMIGOS Preservation Service (APS) is offering the first in a series of training courses in preservation, designed to reach all levels of library and archives staff. The half-day course entitled “Preservation Issues for Directors” will provide top administrators with information on budgeting, funding sources, organizational positioning, and management planning for preservation. The course is applicable to all types and sizes of cultural institutions

Because the AMIGOS Preservation Service is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the course is being offered for a low registration fee. APS was established in 1991, with the mission of documenting the preservation needs of libraries and archives in the Southwest and to help in planning preservation programs to meet those needs. Further information is available from Tom Clareson, AMIGOS Preservation Service Manager at (800) 843-8482

Hands-on Workshops at Johns Hopkins University

The Milton S. Eisenhower Library at Johns Hopkins University, with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), will offer ten hands-on workshops each year in basic and advanced preservation techniques over the next three years.

The workshops will offer training opportunities to staff employed in mid-sized and smaller libraries, archives, and historical and genealogical societies that have established a commitment to preserving their collections. Focus of the workshops will include such topics as book repair, disaster recovery and exhibit preparation. For more information contact the Administrative Officer, Milton S. Eisenhower Library, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD 21218; or call (410) 516 8326

Mid-West Institute on Preservation Strategies for Collection Management

A regional institute, “Preservation Strategies for Collection Management,” sponsored by the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS), a division of the American Library Association (ALA), is scheduled to be held May 3-4, 1993, at the Conference Center at the University of Notre Dame. The institute is geared to librarians from institutions with little or no formal preservation program, and will equip those involved in collection management with the needed skills to set preservation priorities, work with available resources and establish plans that are appropriated to the collection(s) at risk within their institutions. For more information contact Yvonne McLean, ALClS, at (800) S45-2433

Mellon Foundation Study on University Libraries

The Andrew W Mellon foundation recently released a report entitled “University Libraries and Scholarly Communication,” published by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), that discusses the transformation of university libraries in recent years in areas from budget reductions to electronic access to information.

According to an article in The Chronicle of Higher Education (February 17, 1993) the report suggests that libraries have begun a period of what promises to be “tumultuous change as the computer revolution redefines scholarly publishing and helps to transform the library from a warehouse of printed materials to a gateway for gaining electronic access to information.” The report also indicates a contradiction in the assumption that most libraries have received increased financial support since the 1960’s when university and college budgets started steady growth. Instead, financial support has decreased, leaving libraries “struggling to computerize their operations and pay sky-rocketing prices for journals and other materials ”

The report argues that recent changes have resulted in “less access to scholarly information, since library budgets cannot keep up with increases in the cost and volume of materials,” and implies that pressures on acquisition budgets will eventually make some research libraries seem more alike, “as each ceases to purchase as many of the more esoteric publications and chooses rather to be sure that essential volumes are acquired.” For further information contact the ARL at (202) 296-2296.

Harvard Releases Report on Deacidification

Harvard University has released a 17-page report on the first year of its pilot program on mass deacidification. Some seven Harvard libraries/collections participated in the program during 1990-1991, and an estimated $6,000 was spent to deacidify materials from each of the libraries or collections involved with the program.

The report states that in the second year of the pilot program, additional libraries and collections have joined in the effort. The Preservation Service Department at Harvard’s Widener Library has been sending regular shipments of books designated for repair or rebinding through the deacidification process. Widener’s Binding Librarian has assumed responsibility for coordination of the operational aspects of the mass deacidification program in conjunction with the Harvard University Library Preservation Office. For more information about the report, please contact the Preservation Office at (617) 495-8596

Haverford College Microfilming Quaker Periodicals

Haverford College, Haverford, PA, is microfilming 103 titles in its Quaker Periodicals Collection, funded by a $64,281 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Division of Preservation and Access. The periodicals are heavily used by scholars and researchers; seven books researched in the Quaker Periodicals Collection have been published in the last five years. The periodicals cover Quakers’ participation in “the world’s business,” giving the Quaker view on topics such as the American Civil War, women’s social and political history, abolitionism and westward exploration

Order Form Available

A copy of the revised version of the Commission’s publication order form is included with this newsletter. Please note that the updated form includes order numbers coordinated with stock and supply numbers This process will help expedite order turnaround and efficiency. Those ordering or requesting publications are encouraged to include these numbers with all queries. For more information write to the attention of Sonny Koerner at the Commission, or call (202) 939-3400.

Commission on Preservation and Access
1400 16th Street, NW, Suite 740
Washington, DC 20036-2217
(202) 939-3400 Fax: (202) 939-3407

The Commission on Preservation and Access was established in 1986 to foster and support collaboration among libraries and allied organizations in order to ensure the preservation of the published and documentary record in all formats and to provide enhanced access to scholarly information.

The Newsletter reports on cooperative national and international preservation activities and is written primarily for university administrators and faculty, library and archives administrators, preservation specialists and administrators, and representatives of consortia, governmental bodies, and other groups sharing in the Commission’s goals. The Newsletter is not copyrighted; its duplication and distribution are encouraged.

Patricia Battin–President
Maxine K. Sitts–Program Officer, Editor


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