ASCLA – ICAN Consortia Management Discussion Group

ASCLA – ICAN  Consortia Management Discussion Group

When: ALA Midwinter, Sunday, January 17, 2010
Time: 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm
Where: Boston Convention & Exhibition Center, Room 213

Topic for discussion: Communicating the value of library systems in both a single-type or multi-type consortium
            The three library systems in New York State – Public, School, and the NY3Rs (multi-type regional systems that include the other two system types as members) – have come together as a group called the New York Alliance of Library Systems (NYALS) to share information and develop initiatives that benefit all systems.  One issue this consolidated group has been investigating is how to demonstrate and communicate the value of library systems to its members, to funders (both local and state legislative bodies), and to the State Library and its divisions that provides a form of governance over all types of library systems in NY. 
As a consortium or a system, we understand the efficiency that providing services on a larger scale can improve information access to our end users.  We also recognize the cost effectiveness in providing the infrastructure and collaborative services network on a system level that cannot ordinarily be accomplished by single libraries. These services include but are not limited to automated virtual union catalogs, aggregated purchases of databases, virtual reference services, region-wide platforms for digital assets, resource sharing, training, and central processing.
            As systems:
o       What are the issues facing our members that may impact our visibility?
o       What obstacles are we facing that will impact our ability to continue to provide services?
o       Are the services we are currently providing still valuable to our members?
o       Are we asking the hard questions about our ability to remain viable?
o       Are we talking and telling more than showing and demonstrating?
o       Are we different than we were ten years ago and how will we look in another ten years?


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