We are excited to bring you this first edition of Insights and very much hope you all like the changes in format and design. It is not just Insights that has changed – change is happening all around us – and it is a strong theme in many of the articles in this issue. Aleksandra K Krotoski says that the internet is “the greatest social experiment of our time” and while this means great opportunities to gather and share open data, it brings with it new ethical issues that we have yet to address. IJsbrand Jan Aalbersberg and his colleagues from Elsevier discuss what the article of the future might look like and Reed Elfenbein of Wiley-Blackwell considers how scholarly communication might change and how publishing now needs constantly to reinvent itself. Mike Taylor talks about how the use of new technologies has the potential to reduce costs, deal with information overload and foster collaboration. If, like us, you are still a little fuzzy about the benefits of the Open Researcher and Contributor ID organization (ORCID) – this article makes it all clear!
In the face of all this technological change, James G Neal discusses not only how the academic research library might sustain its core responsibilities but also how it is taking on important new roles. James argues that one of those roles is as a builder of digital collections, and such activity increasingly means collaboration. Fortuitously, Simon Bell from the British Library has provided us with his top-ten things to consider when entering into public-private digitization partnerships and Caren Milloy of JISC Collections tells us about some of the challenges her organization has faced in building platforms for digitized content.
Terry Bucknell follows up on the presentation he gave at last year's UKSG conference by discussing how buying packages or bundles of e-books can provide better value than title-by-title selection or patron-driven acquisition (PDA). With big deals for journals and perhaps for e-books, you might think that inter-library loan (ILL) is a thing of the past – but Mike McGrath tells us that ILL is in good health, and Gareth J Johnson gives us the low-down on the UK inter-lending scene!
The economic downturn means that cancellations are now an unpleasant fact, and Anne Murphy explains how the AMNCH Library used an evidenced-based approach when faced with having to make a 25% reduction in subscribed titles. Challenging economic times also means a greater emphasis than ever on efficiency and therefore no surprise that the UKSG one-day conference on the subject of ‘shared services’ was a sell-out. Colin M Cram has written up his presentation for us and it provides practical examples from other sectors of the possible pitfalls and opportunities in setting up a shared service. Marc van den Berg from Tilburg University describes how his local implementation of an integrated library system (ILS) and a cloud solution may be a building block for a Dutch national shared infrastructure for scholarly output. Collaborations are increasingly not only national but also international and Karen Christensen discusses the communication tools we might require to build cross-border communities to energize learning and teaching.
The most enjoyable part of editing Insights is the contact with people in the industry, and in this issue we are pleased to be able to include so many interesting information professionals. We start off by introducing two members of our own editorial board: Nick Woolley from King's College London and Kari Paulson, President of EBL. We were delighted when a retired member of our editorial board, Dan Tonkery, was able to step into the breach and interview Deanna Marcum – this is something of an Insights scoop as she has only just started in her new role as Managing Director, Ithaka S+R. In this issue, we also profile Sarah Thomas, the first woman and non-British citizen to be Bodley's Librarian. Our very popular ‘A day in the life’ series introduces you to two characters who certainly get to travel. Todd Carpenter from NISO in the United States describes a terrifying flight to the Charleston Conference and Kerem Kahvecioglu from Istanbul Bilgi University in Turkey tells us about his internship at the Yale Law School Library. Kerem discovered that this library not only lends books – but a dog called Monty!
Finally, Oya Rieger from Cornell University Library leads on our Key Issue: institutional versus subject repositories.
We hope to see many of you in Glasgow at the UKSG Annual Conference, and for those of you who cannot make it, we will bring you articles and reports on all of the hot topics in our next issue.