ULC Meeting Minutes for March 31, 2005

March 31, 2005

Attending: Kenneth Ralls; Craig Burgler, Blaire Knox, Cale McDowell, Angela Palmer; David Flaxbart, Fred Heath, Dennis Dillon, Sue Phillips; Jocelyn Duffy

Sarah Thomas, University Librarian at Cornell, will be a guest at the next meeting of the committee, on April 21, 2005 from noon until 1 P.M., in PCL 3.204. The topics of discussion will include Rethinking Library as Place in the Digital World and Student Uses of Library Space.

Jocelyn Duffy distributed two handouts: "France Plans to Digitize Its 'Cultural Patrimony' and Defy Google's 'Domination'" (Chronicle of Higher Education), and "The System of Scholarly Communication: Shaping the Future" (Library Issues, Vol. 25, No. 3).

David Flaxbart, head librarian of the Mallet Chemistry Library, gave a PowerPoint presentation on the evolving use of the Chemistry Library on campus and its comparative ranking among its national peer libraries.

While noting the decreasing use of the physical collection and the increasing use of the digital collection, David touched upon such issues as the decreasing number of publishers and the increasing prices of monographs and serials, new and developing niches within the literature, and the increasing need for medical literature on campus.

Dr. Heath commented that the book budget for the University Libraries needs an additional $600K to keep the present journals without adding any. David discussed the importance of collaboration with the faculty, the possibilities that departments can support purchasing important resources, and the need for endowment monies and development efforts.

Angela Palmer asked whether the new nanotechnology building would have an effect on the use of the Chemistry Library.

David Flaxbart observed that the interdisciplinary program has been on campus since 2000, and has already increased demand for and use of the Chemistry Library's materials.

An example of a collaborative project between the Chemistry Library and the chemistry departments is the Academic Genealogy of Chemistry Faculty.

Angela asked who works at the Chemistry Library.

David replied himself, a Library Assistant III, a Library Assistant I, and between 7 and 8 students.

Referring to the earlier handout, Dr. Heath said that the article from the Chronicle of Higher Education shows French concern about the available digital library becoming increasingly Anglocentric. A project in Europe similar to Google's can only benefit users, he noted, by creating a larger digital library containing more retrospective materials.

Professor and chairperson Ken Ralls urged committee members to look at the differences found by searching for "Google digitizing" when searched in Google and when searched in Yahoo! He found the differences intriguing.

Dr. Heath commented that these projects will be interesting to watch during the summer, and will make for further discussions for next year's committee.

Professor Ralls said that during the Faculty Council meeting in April, the name of the Library Committee will be officially changed to the University of Texas Libraries Committee. The function statement for the committee will be updated as well.