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LALC: A successful challenge

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The Lebanese Academic Library consortium (LALC) presented during eIFL conference in Cairo (2005).

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LALC: A successful challenge

  1. 1. BY Houeida Kammourié-Charara Head, Information Systems Department Notre Dame University Libraries Collaborative Management Of Electronic Resources Workshop Cairo April 18-19, 2005 LALC : A Successful Challenge
  2. 2. Agenda <ul><li>Consortia: Definition, History, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>LALC: Creation, Funding, Members, LOA, Meetings, Activities, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>LALC Advantages and Drawbacks. </li></ul><ul><li>LALC Achievements and Future Challenge. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  3. 3. Consortia: What & When? <ul><li>Continuing evolution of cooperation among libraries: “Consortia”. </li></ul><ul><li>Consortia are usually formed when two or more institutions realize that working together is more effective than working separately. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  4. 4. Definition Of Consortium <ul><li>Consortia OR Consortiums. </li></ul><ul><li>“ Formal association of a number of organizations, usually in a specific geographical area, with agreed goals and objectives. </li></ul><ul><li>Services covered can include collection development, cataloguing, computer alliances, systems support, education and training, interlibrary loans, library automation, purchasing, etc.” . </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  5. 5. Consortia History <ul><li>1960s: Creation of union catalogs </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Library Consortia flourish. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>1970s: Interlibrary loans, joint storage, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>1980s: Automation </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Stagnation period. </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>1990s: Re-flourishing of Consortia for electronic resources. </li></ul><ul><li>2000s: Consortium of Consortia. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  6. 6. LALC “raison d’être” <ul><li>To cope with changes that took place in the university environment in Lebanon. </li></ul><ul><li>To keep pace with users requests and expectations in academic libraries, in particular in the e-resources field. </li></ul><ul><li>To cooperate between libraries in the best interest of library users in the most economical way. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  7. 7. LALC story <ul><li>The vision began in 2001. The University of Balamand was the leader by inviting and encouraging all major academic institutions in Lebanon to develop a library consortium of electronic resources. </li></ul><ul><li>Three private institutions replied to the UOB invitation. Jointly they formed LALC, the first Arab and Lebanese formal Academic Library Consortium. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  8. 8. LALC members <ul><li>American University of Beirut (AUB) </li></ul><ul><li>Lebanese American University (LAU) </li></ul><ul><li>Notre Dame University (NDU) </li></ul><ul><li>University of Balamand (UOB) </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  9. 9. American University of Beirut (AUB) <ul><li>AUB is a private, independent, non-sectarian institution of higher learning, founded in 1866 and chartered from the State of New York. </li></ul><ul><li>The language of instruction is English. </li></ul><ul><li>The University Libraries consist of two central libraries, the Saab Memorial Medical Library and Jafet Memorial Library, which has three branch libraries. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  10. 10. Lebanese American University (LAU) <ul><li>LAU is a multi-campus career-oriented and private institution chartered by the Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York. </li></ul><ul><li>The language of instruction is English. </li></ul><ul><li>The University Libraries consist of 2 main libraries located in Beirut and Byblos. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  11. 11. Notre Dame University (NDU) <ul><li>NDU is a Lebanese non-profit Catholic and private institution of higher education, founded in 1987.The university adopts the American system of education. </li></ul><ul><li>The language of instruction is English . </li></ul><ul><li>The NDU Libraries consist of three libraries located in Zouk Mosbeh, Barsa, and Deir el Kamar Campuses . </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  12. 12. University of Balamand (UOB) <ul><li>The University of Balamand (UOB) is a private, non-profit, independent institution of higher learning which was founded in 1988. </li></ul><ul><li>The university follows the American educational model and teaches in the English language, but it also offers programmes in French and Arabic. </li></ul><ul><li>The Atef Danial Library is the main library . </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  13. 13. LALC By-Laws 2002 <ul><li>In 2002 a draft was prepared for LALC By-Laws which stated: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ LALC Mission Statement is to improve and expand the library services and resources of its institutional members. This is achieved through building a cooperative yet comprehensive collection of electronic resources and e-journals that will enable LALC member institutions to share resources and provide information to their users more efficiently and cost-effectively.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>This draft had never been approved and was replaced by a Letter of Agreement (LOA). </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  14. 14. Letter of Agreement 2004 <ul><li>In May 3 rd 2004, a formal LOA was signed between LALC members in which the parties agreed to establish a consortium under the name of &quot;Lebanese Academic Library Consortium – LALC”. </li></ul><ul><li>After 2 years of active work, LALC status was officially announced. </li></ul><ul><li>The LOA governs all LALC activities. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  15. 15. LALC main objectives <ul><li>“ To cooperate in the selection, pricing negotiations and access methods of electronic resources in the best interest of the library users in an economical way for the library. </li></ul><ul><li>To give priority to the acquisition of scholarly and scientific resources in digital format and to make every effort to provide efficient and most cost-effective users access to such resources.” </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  16. 16. Membership and Meetings <ul><li>Each member library is represented by one librarian designated by the institution. </li></ul><ul><li>Librarians meet regularly in order to discuss resource acquisition and other relevant issues. </li></ul><ul><li>Meetings are held on a rotation basis at the location of the member institutions and are agreed on at the end of each meeting. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  17. 17. The Consortium Coordinator <ul><li>The Consortium Coordinator is elected among LALC members for a period of three (3) years with the possibility of renewal. His or her duties are (among others): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>To convene the parties for meetings. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To keep minutes of meetings and send them to LALC members. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To draft and submit an annual report in September of each year which include LALC activities, meetings, purchases, etc. </li></ul></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  18. 18. Financial issues <ul><li>Budget planning, payments and agreements are done on individual basis. </li></ul><ul><li>Each institution has its own payment methods and applies its own policies and procedures in this regard. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  19. 19. Guidelines of New Acquisitions <ul><li>Steps to follow when a member of LALC is interested in a new e-resource: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Contact all LALC members in order to identify interested parties. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Contact the related vendor by email (Template letter) to request a trial and cost estimate. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Act as contact throughout the negotiations and correspondence. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Update LALC members on new discussions, problems and offers. </li></ul></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  20. 20. Guidelines for Project Proposal (1) <ul><li>Steps to follow when a member of LALC is interested in implementing a project: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Submit the project or activity to the Coordinator, who will circulate it to all LALC members. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Preliminary approval will be acquired by the representatives from their respective directors. </li></ul></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  21. 21. Guidelines for Project Proposal (2) <ul><ul><li>Once accepted, the initiator, together with any other interested LALC member, will draft a comprehensive proposal including the process and timetable. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The DRAFT proposal, after being agreed on by the representatives, will be raised to the directors of the institutions. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Implementation will be initiated once the approval of the institutions is acquired. </li></ul></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  22. 22. International Approach: ICOLC <ul><li>In order to achieve LALC’s aim on building liaisons with other regional and international bodies the author (LALC contact person) approached the following bodies: ICOLC and eIFL. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>LALC is the first Lebanese and Arab consortium member in the International Coalition of Library Consortia (ICOLC) which primarily serves higher education institutions by facilitating discussion among consortia on issues of common interest. </li></ul></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  23. 23. International Approach: eIFL <ul><ul><li>LALC is working currently on joining eIFL.net which is an independent foundation that strives to lead, negotiate, support and advocate for the wide availability of electronic resources by library users in transition and developing countries. </li></ul></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  24. 24. New members? <ul><li>No new members for LALC in the near future; several facts are behind this conviction: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Lack of financial resources to invest in e-resources. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Incapability of reaching decisions at the same pace of LALC administrators, i.e., finalising an agreement at a certain deadline. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lack in staff experience of handling consortia services. </li></ul></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  25. 25. Results and Achievements <ul><li>Formalizing and strengthening the relationship between LALC members through the signing of the Letter of Agreement. </li></ul><ul><li>Increasing the number of full-text databases, with more concurrent users (unlimited) and reducing the cost of annual subscription. </li></ul><ul><li>Establishing working relationships with several new vendors. </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborating with organizations in Lebanon such as the Lebanese Library Association and outside Lebanon such as ICOLC and eIFL. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  26. 26. LALC “Good points” <ul><li>Overall performance: LALC has been successful. </li></ul><ul><li>Allowing member libraries to acquire more resources with less expense. </li></ul><ul><li>Providing library users with more information resources. </li></ul><ul><li>Improving the working relationship among librarians and providing an opportunity for them to learn from each other. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  27. 27. LALC “Bad points” <ul><li>Loss of autonomy: Decision for LALC not for individual libraries. </li></ul><ul><li>Time consuming “Too many meetings.” </li></ul><ul><li>Extra effort required to do a consortial deal does not ‘systematically’ result in added benefit. </li></ul><ul><li>Responding to changing local needs cannot be done without the worry about the impact on other libraries. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  28. 28. Future Challenge <ul><li>LALC members need to review and evaluate their consortium work in order to create an example that would set standards for consortia in Lebanon. </li></ul><ul><li>To attempt to add more functions to LALC such as cooperative cataloguing, online union catalogue, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>To expand subscriptions by including e-references and e-journals. </li></ul><ul><li>To offer electronic access to scholarly journals through individual publishers. </li></ul><ul><li>To widen membership to possibly include regional institutions. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  29. 29. Thank you <ul><li>LALC is a successful experience from a small but PROUD country </li></ul><ul><li>Houeida Kammourié-Charara </li></ul><ul><li>Head, Information Systems Department </li></ul><ul><li>Notre Dame University-Louaizé Libraries </li></ul><ul><li>LEBANON </li></ul><ul><li>E-mail [email_address] </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara
  30. 30. References <ul><li>Habre, Cendrella. &quot; Lebanese Academic Library Consortium. “ AFLI 13 th Conference, Beirut. Oct.-Nov. 2002. </li></ul><ul><li>Kammourié-Charara, Houeida. &quot; Academic library consortia with examples from the Arab World. “ MELCOM 25 th Conference, Beirut. May 2003. </li></ul><ul><li>Kammourié-Charara , Houeida. &quot; The Role of Consortia in Academic Libraries: A Case Study of the Lebanese Academic Library Consortium (LALC). &quot; Diss. U of Wales, 2003 . </li></ul><ul><li>Lebanese Academic Library Consortium (2004). Annual Report , 2003-2004. </li></ul>© Houeida Kammourié-Charara