Shared Collection Building: Constructing the 21st Century Relational Research Library
The licensing of electronic products imposes new challenges for the library. Today's library, whether it is a research library or a small private liberal arts college library, is dealing with the challenge of electronic products. The challenges are multiple and complex and only differ in number, depending upon staffing and budget. The new challenges of electronic products tend to focus around some common elements, including budgeting, technical issues, staff, consortia, and licensing. The increase in electronic journals caused the invention of the 'XYZ package of electronic journals'. The library has moved beyond being a central storage site of knowledge at a college or university. The electronic version of journals parallels the print counterparts. To help alleviate the costs of packages, print tie-in subscriptions, and the effort and cumbersome task of dealing with licenses, libraries are gravitating toward consortial agreements. The struggle to license electronic products has created a new type of librarian and a new type of library.