News from the Dean

News from the Dean

Mark I. Greenberg, Dean of Libraries

Welcome back! I hope you had a wonderful summer and are excited for the start of a new academic year. As we begin Fall Quarter, I want to share information about important activities underway in the Western Libraries as well as recent accomplishments.

This past June, the Libraries released a list of subscription cancellations, effective January 1, 2017. The list emerged from an eight-month-long process to reduce journal subscription expenses and balance the budget. Escalating subscription prices and a flat library resources budget required cuts of $230,000 for this year academic and will require further cuts in coming years as prices continue to rise. A Senate Library Committee task force established cancellation criteria and outlined a process to solicit faculty feedback. Faculty across the university reviewed 3,614 journal titles and requested 579 for retention. Following intensive negotiations with journal vendors, Western was able to retain 278 titles but ultimately was forced to cancel 3,336. In making the difficult decision to discontinue specific journal titles, the Libraries sought to maximize its buying power with each vendor and reduce disruption to faculty, staff, and students. Where journals are discontinued, the Libraries will do everything possible to provide content via interlibrary loan or purchase-on-demand. To this end, the Libraries added a + Summit + Articles + More tab to OneSearch. Searching + More provides bibliographic information about scholarly resources the Western Libraries can provide via Inter-Library Loan. To learn more about the subscription reduction review process or the effected journals, please visit the Subscriptions Reduction Review web site or contact Collection Services.

The Libraries (in partnership with the Graduate School, Office of the Provost, and Office of Research and Sponsored Programs) is pleased to provide Western CEDAR. The online Institutional Repository advances Western’s commitment to enriching academic inquiry and strengthening communities by sharing the expertise and creativity of its students, faculty, and staff worldwide via the Web. Since its launch just over two years ago, content in CEDAR has grown to include 115 individual faculty research pages located in the SelectedWorks Author Gallery, 28 departmental pages, 7 monographs, numerous Office of Survey Research reports, 530 theses, 2015 and 2016 Scholars Week poster sessions, the 2014 Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference, the Journal of Educational Controversy, and the brand new Huxley College of the Environment journal Summit to Salish Sea: Inquiries and Essays. At the end of August 2016, nearly 3,300 documents contained in CEDAR had been downloaded worldwide 133,906 times. All campus units are invited to disseminate reports, papers, datasets, conference proceedings, and the like. People interested in open access publishing can manage the editorial process and publish the final product. The Libraries has taken an active leadership role in managing CEDAR day to day, teaching faculty, staff, and students about the software’s many capabilities, and educating them on their intellectual property rights and responsibilities. To learn more about CEDAR and how you can get involved, don’t hesitate to contact Scholarly Communications Librarian Jenny Oleen or CEDAR Project Manager Kim Marsicek.

In addition to developments in the Libraries’ virtual space, exciting physical changes have transformed the second floor of Haggard Hall. The Hacherl Research & Writing Studio, which integrates academic support for research, writing, and reading literacies in a vibrant learning environment staffed by experts, underwent an expansion this past summer. Not even a year old, the Studio welcomed over 1,000 students a week during peak periods. They came to use the flexible furnishings and mobile technologies, to work on academic projects by themselves or with others, and to seek academic support from the Studio’s expert staff. The Libraries quickly learned that the space was not adequate to accommodate student need. This past summer, the Libraries in partnership with ATUS added more furniture and technology, an enclosed workshop room, and reconfigured the Student Technology Center service desk and public computers. The Libraries is grateful to Cindy, Don, and Adam Hacherl for the generous financial support that made the new Studio possible.

In close proximity to the Studio, the Digital Media Center (DMC) meets growing demand for the integration of visual literacies into Western’s curriculum. The modern, million-dollar capital project was designed with input from faculty in five colleges and consists of a fully equipped sound stage, control room, and editing lab to support media production and post-production projects. Under the management of Academic Technology, in partnership with the Western Libraries, the DMC consolidates teaching and learning resources related to new media and serves as a program partner in the Learning Commons.

As always, I encourage you to stop by to see me in Haggard Hall 231 or to send me an email if there is anything I can do to improve the Libraries.


Mark I. Greenberg
Dean of Libraries
September 2016