This month in the Agenda: January 1998

The January 11, 1998 edition of the Agenda.

The January 11, 1998 edition of the Agenda.

This month, we go back two decades in the Agenda’s history to January 1998. The median household income was about $38,000; the world was ramping up for the Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan; and we’d see blockbusters Armageddon, Titanic, and Saving Private Ryan all hit the box office over the course of the year. How did we ring in the New Year at the Libraries?

Asking the Big Questions

[P]rinted below are the questions in the charge [of the Steering Committee for the Libraries Long-Range Plan]…. As you can see, answers to the questions will give us guidance by which we—library faculty and staff—will then make specific plans for our future….

What principles should guide how collections are developed and distributed throughout the system, including, for example, duplication of resources, dispersion of collections, new program development, and locations of departments/programs?

What factors should influence the balance between print and electronic resources that the Libraries provide?

To what extent should the Libraries satisfy the University’s information needs through collaborative resource sharing arrangements or document delivery, as well as the traditional ownership of information resources?

What are the characteristics of service excellence to the university community?

What quality, scope, and types of library space will be required to provide service excellence into the future?

In what ways can the university community act to affect the current scholarly communication models to increase information availability and reduce costs?

– The Agenda 20, no. 1 (January 11, 1998)

Authority Is Constructed and Contextual

At long last, the Rutgers library catalog will have full authority control for all name and series headings. The recently established LIS-Authority Committee is now investigating Sirsi policies for the implementation of authority functions and beginning a search for the vendor which will provide the best services. It will be writing an RFP (Request for Proposal) for authority control processing this spring, with an eye toward selecting a vendor in the early summer. The Committee, chaired by Rhonda Marker of TAS, welcomes all suggestions, wish-lists, and caveats from the library community regarding either vendors or online authority work.

– The Agenda 20, no. 1 (January 11, 1998)

Freshening Up

The Libraries have recently received an allocation from University VP Joseph Seneca of $92,695 to upgrade academic facilities as part of the “Reinvesting in Rutgers” initiative the President announced in his state of the university message.

The Libraries submitted a proposal as part of the academic facilities upgrade component of this initiative. The specific projects that were funded include upgrading the Mathematical Sciences library facilities (carpeting, draperies, acoustical buffers, etc.); replacing the telephone and wiring infrastructure at the Kilmer Library; and upgrading voice wiring at Douglass.

In addition, Media Services was allocated $1.7 million to upgrade the smart classrooms on the New Brunswick campus and to improve the Kilmer Library media classrooms.

Decisions regarding programs to be funded on the Newark and Camden campuses facilities are being handled through their respective provosts, who have not yet reported.

– The Agenda 20, no. 2 (January 25, 1998)


Matt Badessa