A Vision for 21st-Century Scholarly Collections: a report for the Delft University of Technology Library

Like nearly all university libraries, TU Delft faces challenges in managing its journal collection. Contemporary collection management requires juggling multiple issues – keeping the collection dynamic and responsive to faculty needs; championing Open Access; providing the library with a sense of mission; and, crucially, making sure this is all within every-tightening financial boundaries.

Recognising the multifaceted nature of this problem, we are TU Delft Library worked with consultants Information Power to produce ‘A Vision for 21st-Century Scholarly Collections: a report for the Delft University of Technology Library.’

The report sets out a long-term vision for how we can accelerate the drive to cost-constrained full and immediate open access. It suggests three particular aims

  1. achieve 100% cost-constrained Open Access for TU Delft authored research;
  2. critically review the money and time currently spent on reading and publishing in journals, and effectively repurpose the savings;
  3. improve researcher engagement and our open access publishing platform and services.

The report also includes the implementation plan needed to meet these aims. Some of which we have already started, but many require initiation. Indeed, we will shortly have a vacancy open for a Collections Manager to help deliver this vision.

Some of the specific elements on the plan include

  • increase the proportion of our outputs made available through green Open Access,
    because the price growth for gold Open Access is currently unsustainable
  • invite researchers to take steps to change the way they disseminate their research outputs
    in order to support the work of the library
  • Make the results of the annual appraisal and review of subscriptions available to faculty and the university leadership, and to other universities via SURF.
  • Craft a professional publishing strategy to inform the evolution of our open platform and other services so they can deliver excellent user experiences, quality content, and revenue at competitive prices and in alignment with university mission.
  • Develop a library dashboard to act as an evidence base about how its budget is invested and the cost of open access support

We look forward to working locally in the university, nationally with Dutch institutions and internationally with dynamic consortia to bring this vision into being. We note the encouraging advances made by Dutch colleagues and by international groups in the area, and very much look forward to being part of that.

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