The evaluation and horizon scan of library management and related systems will cover Higher Education Institutions across the four UK nations. This study has been jointly commissioned by JISC and SCONUL from Sero Consulting, partnering with Ken Chad Consulting and Glenaffric.
As well as evaluating the current market and identifying key trends, the report due January 2008 will make recommendations on how academic libraries can achieve best value from Library Management Systems and other significant applications, taking in to account the JISC Information Environment and the international e-Framework for education and research.
JISC is working towards an online Information Environment that supports secure and convenient access to resources to benefit learning, teaching and research. This will involve deep and seamless integration of services and resources within the personal, institutional, national and global landscape.
As David Kay, Lead Consultant at Sero, points out, ‘it is essential that library systems should interoperate with external services provided by JISC or others in the wider world, such as Google, as well as with internal services provided by the host institutions, such as Virtual Learning Environments. This raises a range of questions regarding the role, nature and value of library systems.’
The project will involve three main components – a Horizon Scan, consultation with LMS vendors and a survey of libraries – and will be supported by a reference group of experts from the sector.
‘This project is timely’, says Ken Chad. ‘There is a wave of change in the systems market with many LMS vendors changing ownership in the last two years. The rapid development of web based technologies is changing requirements for library based systems in terms of the learner and the institution.’
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