Related Industry Initiatives
National Commission on Libraries and Information Science (NCLIS)
Denise Davis at the NCLIS has commissioned John Bertot and Charles McClure of Florida State University to undertake a project entitled the “2000 Internet Connectivity Study.” The authors will measure the level of connectivity, public access, training support, and technology available for the staff and patrons of public libraries. Focusing primarily on aggregators of indexes that include full text, the study authors are gathering information on the ability of public libraries to report electronic database use.
Association of Research Libraries (ARL)
Martha Kyrillidou manages ARL’s New Measures Initiative, which includes E-Metrics, a major project that began in June 2000. E-Metrics focuses on the development of statistics and performance measures for the delivery of networked information resources and services. Twenty-three ARL member libraries are participating in a study led by Charles McClure and Wonsik (Jeff) Shim from the Information Management Use and Policy Institute at Florida State University.
Scheduled for completion in December 2001, the E-metrics project has three phases. In the first phase, information will be gathered on ARL libraries’ best practices in statistics, measures, processes, and activities that pertain to networked resources and services. In the second stage, a methodology will be developed to assess the degree to which such data collection is possible and collected data are comparable among member libraries. In the third phase, a set of refined measures with data descriptions and guidelines for data collection, analysis, and use will be proposed. A separate task force within the project will focus on vendors’ statistics, i.e., the definition of data elements and terms, specific data that can be collected, and methods for reporting data to libraries.
National Information Standards Organization (NISO)
Patricia Wand, director of the library at American University, and Denise Davis, director of statistics and surveys at the NCLIS, are leading the planning process for a review of the current standard on Library Statistics. This revision will address areas such as performance measures and the measurement of electronic services and resources, which were not dealt with in the last review. Formal discussions will begin at a workshop to be held in February 2001.
Funded by the European Commission, EQUINOX is designed to gain agreement on performance measures for the electronic library and develop an integrated software tool for use by European librarians. Building on earlier projects that focused on tools for book collections (e.g., EQLIPSE, MINSTREL), EQUINOX will take the lead in developing electronic performance indicators.
The indicators in this project are defined either in an International Standards Organization (ISO) document or by the project team. Team members use several methods to identify the percentage of a library’s target population that is served and trained to use materials. These include on-site and remote sessions, downloads, cost per session and per download, level of workstation usage and number of rejected sessions, and percentage of the acquisitions budget spent on electronic resources.
Funded by the Directorate General X (DG X) of the European Commission, this three-year project is nearing completion. It is focused on gathering consistent information about the libraries’ development as information resources within European countries. The LibEcon 2000 Web site was established to test and then generate an automatic means of collecting data from respondents in 29 countries.
Project staff are working closely with the United Nations’ Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO); the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA); the European Commission’s central statistical agent (Eurostat); the European Bureau of Library, Information, and Documentation Associations (EBLIDA); and the appropriate committees of the ISO.