Goffinet N, Delvenne C, Chalon P, Pasleau F. Daily management of the transition to the future. 8th European Conference of medical and Health Libraries; 2002 Sept. 18-21; Köln, Germany.
The Faculty of Medicine Library holds approximately 1100 living and
approximately 2500 arrested journals. As a hospital library, it is
focused on the information actuality and availability. As an academic
library, it is responsible for emphasizing the value of an intellectual
heritage. As a public non profit institution, it must guarantee open
access to knowledge. How do we face these functions when decreasing
buying power commands to continuously reduce the number of institutional
subscriptions to periodicals? We propose to describe the different
analyses performed to support decision making as well as the first
attempts to organize consortium-level access to expanded electronic
collections. From now, purchasing will be strictly correlated to usage,
quality and interest.
Consultation survey over a one year period allows
to discriminate between the titles which are not, occasionally or
regularly consulted. The hypothesis will be verified that journal use is
dependent from criteria such as fame, quality and indexation in major
databases like Medline. General quality assessment is possible for the
journals indexed in the ISI databases, which will be ranked according to
their impact factor and relative position in the Journal Citation
Report's subject category listings. But an in depth analysis is also
necessary at the Faculty level. Where do the physicians and Faculty
members publish their results? What do they read?
The Web of Science
provides tools to answer such questions. Cited publications of the
Faculty will be identified and sorted by journal title. In addition,
interest for individual journals will be measured from how many times
their contents is cited in the articles published by the Faculty.
Statistical analyses of interlibrary loans will also be included in the
As a consequence, hundreds of "second range" periodicals will be
cancelled while the part of the budget dedicated to medical databases
will be maintained, even increased if necessary. Indeed, these tools
guarantee the access to knowledge, with the disadvantage that the
library becomes the hostage of commercial companies for the access to
primary information. Consortia have been signed by the universities of
the Belgian French Community for the access to a core of major
bibliographic databases and to electronic journals.
The first statistics
about ScienceDirect customer usage reports will be presented. But, in
the absence of major governmental funding, the benefits of the consortia
or of any kind of centralized purchasing remain limited. Moreover, they
introduce discrimination between editors. The presented strategy
appears as an answer to an emergency situation and long term solutions
must be searched elsewhere. They will be discussed.