academic libraries Re: [OPEN-ILS-GENERAL] 226 subscribers

Ann-Marie Breaux ABreaux at
Thu Mar 29 10:54:08 EDT 2007

Hi everyone - I joined this list a couple weeks ago along with many
other folks and am learning lots from the recent posts. 

Our interest in library integrated systems relates mainly to the tech
services side of things - acquisitions and cataloging - and not so much
to circulation, OPAC, etc. From a supplier's perspective, my main
concern about open source is that as users develop their acquisitions
solutions, there will be some attempt to follow EDI standards and
practices, and not to develop too many different solutions to the same
task. We currently accept orders from customers in several EDI formats
as well as an array of non-standard formats, and deliver MARC records,
order responses, and electronic invoicing in similar ways. As the
Evergreen community builds its acquisitions module, I'm hoping it will
work with some of the existing EDI standards (EDIFACT and XML being the
primary international ones) and web services.

Building on Jason's list below, another differentiator for academic
libraries is approval plans. One mindset that I've found as I talk with
systems vendors is that acquisitions is mainly perceived as a task of
pushing orders to suppliers and receiving data/materials from suppliers
in response to those orders. That leads to requirements such as needing
a proprietary or precoordinated PO number for bibliographic or
electronic invoice matching. 

However, many academic libraries use approval plans which result in
automatic shipments from the suppliers not in response to any order from
the library. When the materials are received, generally a bib, item,
order, invoice/payment and sometimes holdings record all have to be
built in the local system, preferably in some sort of batch way so that
the library staff does not have to do much item-by-item work. On the
public library side, approval plans are not used as heavily, but they do
use automatic shipment plans for leased materials, hot authors, hot
children's series, etc., so I would think the needs are similar. 

As the acquisitions system starts to be developed, I hope that it will
be done with some input from academic and public library suppliers.
Thanks for taking this into consideration. 

Ann-Marie Breaux      
Vice President, Academic Service Integration 
YBP Library Services, plus Baker & Taylor and J.A. Majors

phone/fax: (678) 445-5720 
vmail: (800) 258-3774 x3504 
e-mail: abreaux at 

GA address: 131 Dockside Downs Drive, Woodstock, GA  30189 
NH address: 999 Maple Street, Contoocook, NH  03229

-----Original Message-----
From: open-ils-general-bounces at
[mailto:open-ils-general-bounces at] On Behalf Of
Jason Etheridge
Sent: Thursday, March 29, 2007 4:40 AM
To: open-ils-general at
Subject: academic libraries Re: [OPEN-ILS-GENERAL] 226 subscribers

On 3/29/07, Peter Newman <Peter.Newman at> wrote:
> All our servers here run on VMWare ESX infrastructure

Very cool.  I'm a big vmware fan, though I've never used it for servers.

> Are there many academic institutions running Evergreen?

There isn't.  The only live in-production instance of Evergreen
currently is with the PINES consortium and its 265 public libraries,
though I don't expect that to remain true for very long. :)  There's
certainly academic interest and some volunteer contributors from
academic institutions, and recently the Georgia Public Library Service
has partnered with the University of Windsor to develop an
acquisitions/serials module.

I'd like to see Evergreen support not only academic libraries, but
mixed consortia where you have academic, public, and special
libraries.  With that thought, I'd like to pick some brains and see
how some academic needs and concepts might map to public libraries
and/or Evergreen.  I'll throw out a few that come to my mind, and you
guys can correct me if I misinterpret any of them, and add any others
you can think of.

1) Recalls.  Basically, you can have someone like a Professor borrow
an item indefinitely, until someone else wants the item, at which
point the Professor gets notified and is supposed to return the item.
This is probably do-able under the hood now, though there isn't
interface support for it currently.  We basically create a hold type
of Recall and let it trigger such actions as emailing the current
borrower, and maybe resetting the due date for the existing

In fact, I think PINES could use something like this.  PINES policy
says Staff don't accrue late fees for items they have out, though
technically they still have due dates.  A Recall could be an easy way
of getting a specific item back from Staff.

2) Reserves.  Basically, materials are set aside (by say, a Professor)
to be used by a specific group of people (maybe everyone taking a
particular course or class).  One way this could be done today is by
creating a shelving/copy location of Reserves (maybe one for each
course) for a library and giving it default properties of Non
Circulating and Non Holdable for items in that location.  Then it
would be a matter of putting patrons/students into certain permission
or profile groups for those courses making use of reserves, and having
the circ rules make exceptions when it encounters those.  For example,
a shelving location of Reserves - Math 101 is non circulating to
students by default, but if a student is a member of the Math 101
Reserve group, then the circ rules will allow them to circulate an
item from that location.  What we're missing today is an easy GUI for
such group and circ rule manipulation.

3) External patron file/data.  This came up in a talk recently;
basically some libraries would like to
feed/create/update/synchronize/etc. the ILS patron records with
information from a central/external patron database (from say, the
Registrar's office), and maybe go in the other direction as well (the
school's account for a student could get flagged if the student has
unresolved issues at a library).  This is doable, and was basically
done in PINES with the migration of Patron data from the old system to
Evergreen.  In general, given any consistently formatted (and keyed or
indexed) data, we can map that data into Evergreen.

Does anything else come to mind?


Jason Etheridge
GPLS -- PINES Development

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