Friday, February 22, 2008


Some highlights from our JIBS enhancement group meeting with Ovid in February 2008:

The "Ovid Syntax" tab has been changed already, to "Advanced Ovid Search". Customers can select whether "Basic" or "Advanced" should be their institution's default option on opening OvidSP.

We expect some further improvements, an incremental release, to address workflow concerns after Easter 2008. There may also be a more significant release, later in 2008.

There will be more eBooks from Springer, Humana and Oxford University Press. A few Medical Schools have not taken up the free titles available from Ovid through the JISC Observatory project.

New journals in 2008 will include titles from the LWW/AHA "Circulation" stable.

Available only with Ovid - Ovid Nursing Full Text PLUS is a comprehensive and cost-effective single source of premier current journal content from Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, combined with a powerful bibliographic tool from the National Library of Medicine.

"Midwifery Digest" is awaiting archival material; it complements "Maternity and infant care". MIDIRS "Informed Choice" leaflets for patients and professionals will also be available.

The Patient (ADIS) is a new holistic, patient-centred magazine.

WAO Journal from the World Allergy Organization will be published online only.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Update on the Knowledge Exchange Multinational Licensing Tender

This briefing is intended as a guide to the Knowledge Exchange multinational licensing tender for the Knowledge Exchange partner organisations; the members of the Knowledge Exchange Group; the national licensing tender working group; and partner press contacts in anticipation of any press queries resulting from the tender.

The purpose of the joint Knowledge Exchange licensing tender

The purpose of the tender is to determine whether, by working together, the Knowledge Exchange partners can leverage greater economies of scale and promote greater transparency in licence agreements. The Knowledge Exchange partners hope to stimulate the market to offer new content packages to support education and research and to promote innovative business models. The tender focuses specifically on bids in the areas of journals, databases, and multimedia content.

Strategic goals: the future of publishing

These goals form an integral part of the Knowledge Exchange vision: to explore new developments in the future of publishing, including working with publishers to find new licensing models and platforms for the output of research. In this context, the four partner organisations are exploring the possibilities and opportunities that might be gained through collaborative licensing arrangements.

The Knowledge Exchange vision can be found at the following url:

Further details can be found here.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

JIBS Committee - new members

There have been some changes to the JIBS Committee following the AGM in November 2007.

Here is a list of the current committee members:

Sue Cumberpatch (Chair)
Roger Hines (Vice Chair)
Ian Mayfield (Treasurer)
Liz Stevenson (Secretary)
Joan Bird (Membership Officer)
Leo Appleton (FE issues)
Fiona Bowtell (Marketing and Publicity Officer)
Mark Clowes
June Hedges
Maureen Richardson
Chris Roberts (Web Officer)
Adrian Smith
John Smith
Malcolm Taggart
Marion Tattersall

Friday, February 15, 2008

JISC Collections Consultation - World Biographical Information System Online

JISC Collections is considering a licensing agreement for World Biographical Information System Online. K. G. Saur's World Biographical Information System Online (WBIS Online) is a comprehensive and extensive biographical library published online.

The database contains a wealth of biographical information drawn from original sources, covering men and women of all classes and professions from around the world, ranging from the 4th millennium BC to the present. These factors combine to give WBIS Online a social, geographic and historical scope that makes it unique. The strength of the biographical archives lies in the diversity of the biographies that they contain, which ranging from the world of science to politics, culture and business. This is an interdisciplinary resource, but is particularly relevant to history, biographical research, and genealogical research.

Once you have had an opportunity to review the information below and trial the resource JISC Collections would be very grateful if you could complete the online response form at

Further details can be found here.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

JISC Collections appoints new partner to administer online resources agreements

Since 2001 JISC, and more recently JISC Collections, has outsourced the back office subscriptions and helpdesk administration of the agreements it negotiates on behalf of the UK academic community to a third party. This allows the negotiation team to concentrate fully on the task of negotiating the best possible financial conditions and compliance with the JISC licence, knowing that the post-agreement helpdesk and administration is in the hands of customer service specialists.

For 7 years, this supporting role has been provided by Swets, and institutions will be familiar with working with staff at Swets and with making their payments for particular resources to Swets on behalf of JISC Collections.

Following a tender exercise undertaken at the end of 2007, JISC Collections has awarded the new contract to provide this service to Content Complete Limited (CCL), who will be well known to many institutions from their work as the NESLi2 Negotiation Agent. In addition to their role as the Negotiation Agent, CCL provides a dedicated helpdesk relating to NESLi2 matters and for the last two years has been administering the NESLi2 Closed Consortium/Single Payment model, whereby a single payment is made to selected NESLi2 publishers on behalf of subscribing institutions.

In making the decision to change the existing arrangement, Lorraine Estelle, CEO of JISC Collections, is keen to express her gratitude to Swets for the excellent work they have done in fulfilling this role since 2001.

Further details can be found here.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

British Standards On line Enhancement Group February 2008 Meeting

The JIBS BSOL enhancement group met with BSI on the 5 February 2008.
Below I have summarised the major issues that the group wished to raise with BSI. More detail will be found in the minutes of the meeting which will be made available in due course from the JIBS web site; -

There was agreement that the new search engine was an improvement on the previous engine and that users had a far greater chance of locating relevant standards higher up in their results list. However the group had a number of concerns that they raised with BSI.

The change over process to the new software had not gone as smoothly as had been hoped. Many users of Athens and Athens DA had faced authentication problems. Some users had moved to proxy authentication to work around this issue. BSI is working with Eduserv to overcome the problems and it appears that there are now no longer problems with Athens authentication. There continues to be a problem with 2 Athens DA users and work continues on resolving this issue.

The other issue raised by many universities was the "landing page".
Users log in and then have to click on the BSOL link, and this has caused some confusion. Proxy users were now logging and going directly to the BSOL search page. Some Athens users were not able to go directly the BSOL service. BSI is still pursuing this issue.

During the first week of the new service there had been an unforeseen major hardware problem and this had impacted badly on the service which as a result had been unreliable. The customer help line had also failed to cope with the level of demand; this was due to 3 of the 5 staff being signed of on long term sick leave. BSI had taken steps to provide back up but it took a number of weeks to reduce the backlog and to bring the team's response levels back within their service level agreement. The enhancement group had received some positive feedback on customer help within recent weeks.

The group raised a number of issues relating to the design of the search screens and the functionality of the advanced search facility. BSI confirmed that there would be a new release of the software mid 2008 and again towards the end of 2008. They noted the feedback from the group and welcomed our suggestions. The commonest issue raised was the default to number searching and the necessity to make clearer to users how to do a keyword search. This would have a high priority for the next release.

The group will meet again with BSI in late April or early July.

Roger Hines
Chair JIBS BSOL Enhancement Group

Monday, February 11, 2008

Delivering greater savings on online journals

JISC Collections extends the NESLi2 initiative to include online journal content from small and medium sized publishers

A new initiative, launched today by JISC Collections, facilitates access for staff and students in universities, colleges and research councils in the UK to a wider range of online journals: NESLi2 SMP.

JISC Collections is a brand familiar to the university, college and research communities, bringing online information resources from a range of eminent publishers to staff and students in a highly cost-effective way.

NESLi2 is one of the most successful strands of JISC Collections activity. In 2007 NESLi2 negotiations for online journals generated savings of £3.9 million. Based on the success of these negotiations, JISC Collections is extending the range of publishers and journal titles covered by the NESLi2 initiative by launching the new initiative – NESLi2 SMP (NESLi2 for Small and Medium sized Publishers).

The process began last year, when publishers who were interested in participating in the initiative, were invited to submit proposals. These proposals were required to meet some key licensing requirements such as the use of the NESLi2 Model Licence, COUNTER compliance and to provide demonstrable savings to the UK academic community.

A number of publishers submitted proposals, which were reviewed by a panel of library experts. 15 proposals have been accepted and offers from the following publishers are already available to the UK academic community, which are compliant with the Model NESLi2 Licence: American Accounting Association; Berg Publishers; Duke University Press; Future Drugs Ltd; Future Medicine Publishing; Informa Healthcare; IOS Press; Multi-Science Publishing; Now Publishers Inc; Berkeley Electronic Press (Research Now); Royal Society of Medicine Press; and University of California Press.

Further details can be found here.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Local options for OvidSP

Many features of the new platform OvidSP can be tailored to local requirements. You can ask your usual site contact, or Ovid Technical Support. For example the Search History can be "collapsed" or "expanded" as your local setting.

Mauro Castillo Garcia-Maurino (Mauro) has been with Ovid for some years and in 2007 moved to the UK. Optimization of your local implementation is part of his remit.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Personalisation for the Information Environment

There's a basic webpage at the
JISC website

JISC is considering ways by which services could be "personalised" to meet the needs of individual users.

This could be by means of:
* customisation - where a user can explicitly choose some behaviour of the service they are using
* adaptive personalisation -whereby the service tailors its output without user input. This can be either:
- based On Data held elsewhere - for example by the user's institution (APOD)
- by observing User Activity (APUA)

there are questions about if and how personalisation should be realised, and whether it is better handled by the data services, or by (for example) a portal at a user's institution.

* is there a demand for personalised services? What good examples already exist?

What further use-cases are there?
* to what degree institutions have personalised their internal services?
* how would institutions feel about supporting a personalisation infrastructure which may require transfer of personal information outside an institution?

This project is being carried out for JISC by

Max Hammond

Curtis+Cartwright Consulting Ltd.
Main Office:
Surrey Technology Centre
Surrey Research Park
Surrey GU2 7YG

Friday, February 01, 2008

A SAGE investment for the wise librarian

New JISC Collections agreement for SAGE eReference is now available for colleges and universities in the UK

A new agreement announced today between JISC Collections and SAGE, the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher will allow staff, students and researchers in universities and colleges in the UK access to SAGE’s eReference collection.

SAGE eReference is an online collection of over 60 encyclopedias covering a diverse range of subjects, from arts and humanities to health, science and the social sciences. Key titles include the SAGE Sourcebook of Modern Biomedical Devices; Encyclopedia of Children, Adolescents, and the Media; Encyclopedia of Law and Society; Encyclopedia of Business Ethics and Society; Encyclopedia of Governance and the Encyclopedia of Social Psychology.

Institutions have the opportunity to purchase the titles on a perpetual basis for a one-off fee.

Further details can be found here.