Friday, 19 April 2013

Electronic resources and ILL - a self-contradiction?

In this breakout session Helle Brink of Aalborg University, Denmark talked about the inter-library loan system in Denmark, specifically focussing on access to electronic material.

Firstly, Helle gave a brief overview of the library system in Denmark, which has:
  • Royal Library;
  • State and University Library;
  • 98 public libraries;
  • 6 regional libraries;
  • 6 big research/university libraries;
  • 11 university college libraries;
  • 30 institutional libraries;
  • 250 smaller research libraries. 
Denmark also has DanBib, a National Union Catalogue. This fact was particularly interesting to me as I work for SUNCAT, the Serials Union Catalogue for the UK. It was also very interesting to hear about the Danish ILL system as I used to work in a ILL section of an academic library.

There is an automated ILL system in place in Denmark. The delivery service covers 93% of its libraries, and also includes Norway and Sweden. There are approximately 3.9 million requests in 2012 and approximately 3 million materials delivered. Helle noted that some people do not agree with titles being driven around Denmark, but many think that this is better than having the titles sitting on shelves.

DanBib holds information on all materials found in Danish libraries. This includes electronic resources if these are Danish. However, it is an individual library's decision to make foreign e-resources visible in DanLib, at least at article level. All Danish electronic resources are also accessible, but foreign published e-resources are not. There is almost no sharing of electronic resources. IFLA has produced guidelines for ILL and Danish guidelines were updated last year.

DanBib is produced by the DBC, which is publicly funded.There are two ways of searching and requesting using DanBib. The first is, which is for professional access. The second is which is for public access.

When you search DanLib you can see on the search results page the options available to you to access get the e-book. The Table of Contents, abstract and 35 pages or one chapter of the book can all be offered through ILL.

E-articles can also be requested. There are approximately 65 million electronic articles searchable in DanBib. A pilot project has just been set up to send articles from library to library, where a printed version of an article is sent to the local library for the requester to pick up. In 10 months 16,000 articles have been delivered in this way, though this is a very small number of the overall number of articles. 155 libraries all over Denmark are involved in this pilot. The articles are delivered from the State and University Library, which is the Danish legal deposit library, to libraries. These are not sent electronically but are sent in print format.

In Aalborg University licensing and ILL rights details are manually added to the bib record, which takes a lot of time. Helle remarked that the way this information is recorded in bib records needs to be standardised.

Another project was set up in 2007 whereby the library pays fees to the Denmark Copyright Agency which allows the State and University Library to scan material from about 30,000 Danish and foreign journals. The scanned copies then put into an archive for re-use and any copies requested through are sent directly to the user in Denmark. In this initiative approximately 150,000 copies have been sent out and approximately 298,000 have been put in the archive.

New models for partial access need to be explored, including:
  • Walk in use
  • Pay-per-view;
  • Reading - no downloading or printing;
  • Voucher solutions, e.g. 10 articles per year;
  • ILL access e.g. after 3 months
In Denmark ILL is free for end-users, and they want to keep it this way. ILL is not declining, even though items are now available on-line. It seems that the more people find on Google and other information sources the more information they actually want. Also, the point was made that some materials cannot be bought, so they have to get these through ILL. Obtaining e-resources through ILL is a kind of contradiction but it is a way of creating partial access to e-resources for all library users.

Helle mentioned that only the British Library requires a copyright declaration, which means getting a signature from the requester and keeping it for 5 years. This is why they try not to use the BL for ILL. Someone in the audience asked how long it takes for a requester to get the material. Helle replied that it takes one day to find and scan an item, and 3-5 days for an actual item to be delivered.

I thought that this was really interesting session. Learning about what other countries are doing to deal with specific issues is always a good thing.

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