Update: What to Withdraw Decision — Support Tool

The following letter has been sent to users from ITHAKA regarding the updated version of the What to Withdraw Print Collections Management Decision-Support Tool which is used by a number of libraries as one input into their collections decision-making.

Dear colleague,

We are pleased to provide you with an updated version of the What to Withdraw Print Collections Management Decision-Support Tool, available for download here. This update incorporates data on JSTOR archive collections as of June 2012, their image content, and holdings of these materials at the UC and Harvard print repositories.

The updated data demonstrate the progress that both the Harvard and UC archives have made in building towards complete holdings of JSTOR-digitized journals. Since our last release, the number of titles held by both archives has gone up by almost a third. The current release also contains information on recently released JSTOR collections, although in most cases these materials are not yet widely held in the print archives.

As you use the tool, we ask that you continue to refer to the instructional guide or contact us if you have additional questions. We also encourage you to use the data provided by this tool as only one input into your collections decision-making.  For those of you who are highly familiar with the last version of the tool and are digging deeply into the data, you might notice that in a few instances some numbers—including both image and holding statistics—have changed.  We thought we would provide you with more information on the reasons behind these changes.

As additional issues of titles are published, both image and holding statistics can be affected.  Image content in new issues may shift the overall image ratio across a full title, and holdings percentages may temporarily fall due to lag in the process of adding materials to print archives following publication. This impact may be especially notable on more recent titles; a few new issues have a bigger impact on the totals for a journal that has been around for ten years than it does on one that’s been around for a hundred. Also, in a handful of cases, materials may have been temporarily removed from an archive for re-digitization or another purpose. We expect that these changes won’t be a problem for most libraries, but wanted to explain them in case you noticed anything unexpected.

Your Feedback is Needed

This tool is one of several efforts underway across the library community to support long-term preservation of and access to print collections following their digitization. To understand the impact of our work and plan for the future, we are eager to hear how you have been using this tool.   How have you been using the Decision-Support Tool at your library or consortium?  What can we do in the future to make this data as useful as possible for your decision-making?  Please email your thoughts to us at research@ithaka.org

Sincerely,

Ross Housewright and Roger C. Schonfeld

 

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