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Electronic Library Network

Progress Report: April - September 1998

Goal 1

Provide access to a wide range of databases and services, and foster the development of intuitive electronic interfaces to worldwide information resources

Objective 1.1

Develop streamlined connections to ELN databases and services, using new technologies and protocols


  • Web interface to Canadian Business and Current Affairs fulltext database launched by SFU Library (ELN host site)

  • convened group consultation meetings with UMI to provide ELN libraries' input on design of new interface for ProQuest Direct databases (version 2.0)

  • gave presentation at Beyond Hope II conference (northern BC) on web access to ELN databases and phase-out plan for text-based services

  • gave presentation on user authentication and database remote access issues at Centre for Curriculum, Transfer and Technology's Connections conference

  • new SilverPlatter web versions of PsycINFO and ERIC databases launched by UBC Library (ELN host site). The PsycINFO licence covers 1967 -present, 14 additional years of backfile than under the previous UBCLIB system

Objective 1.2

Pursue new database services that meet users' needs

  • launched two new fulltext databases, EBSCO's Academic Search FullTEXT Elite and Canadian MAS FullTEXT Elite, with 26 participating libraries. The ELN licensing agreement provides online access to over 1,200 academic and general interest journals, and saves libraries over 50 percent of the price of acquiring these electronic resources on an institution-by-institution basis

  • coordinated an evaluation of the ELN UnCover customized gateway, resulting in discontinution of the service in August 1998

  • attended demonstration of Electric Library Canada databases

Objective 1.3

Integrate instructional materials with database services

  • negotiatated and arranged EBSCO database training in six regions of the province

  • coordinated distribution of EBSCO database manuals and system documentation

  • provided in-person training for OutLook OnLine interlibrary loan service in Vancouver, Nanaimo and Prince George, and training via phone for all other sites

  • completed and distributed user guide for OutLook OnLine interlibrary loan system

Objective 1.4

Ensure the most appropriate technological platforms, storage and delivery mechanisms for databases and services

  • worked with ELN host sites and database vendors to migrate ELN databases off the UBCLIB platform for September 1, 1998. This included:
    • developing a plan for migrating the 1998 versions of the Media and Serials databases to the Auto- Graphics server
    • managing the transition to the SilverPlatter platform for the PsycINFO and ERIC databases

Goal 2

Facilitate resource sharing among institutions to ensure users have timely and effective access to the province's collective information resources

Objective 2.1

Facilitate links to holdings from commercial services and databases


  • work initiated by UBC Library to integrate the GODOT Serials Holding/Requesting module with the PsycINFO database

Objective 2.2

Integrate user-initiated online ordering features into database services

  • GODOT configuration complete for all participating libraries

Objective 2.3

Provide leadership in establishing a coordinated provincial resource sharing network

  • 1997/98 resource sharing summary report prepared and distributed to all libraries

  • participated in Media Exchange Cooperative's annual general meeting, and consulted libraries and the Advanced Education Media Acquisitions Centre on changes to the Media database

Objective 2.4

Improve union databases

  • new contract for union database production negotiated with AG Canada, in partnership with Library Service Branch, Ministry of Municipal Affairs and British Columbia Library Association. Contract highlights include:
    • pricing in Canadian dollars
    • unlimited update transactions
    • move from offline database production to online process
    • migration from CD-ROM based to web-based interlibrary loan system

  • 1998 version of union database production underway. New contributors include Trinity Western University (Media) and Royal Roads University (Media & Serials)

  • review of matching algorithm for OutLook and Media databases. This had not been done since databases began production

Goal 3

Provide a mechanism for post-secondary libraries to play a prominent role in educational planning, policy development and program delivery

Objective 3.1

Participate on provincial/national projects and planning groups


Objective 3.2

Have a presence and impact within the Ministry and at the senior executive level of post-secondary institutions

  • briefed new OLA President on ELN mandate and services

  • news and media releases distributed for the launch of new fulltext databases

Objective 3.3

Ensure ELN governance and organizational structures reflect the broad educational community and promote effective communication among stakeholders

  • recommendations from Task Group on ELN Advisory Committee Role and Membership implemented; new ELN Steering Committee constituted

Goal 4

Promote organizational alliances that are mutually beneficial to users and service providers

Objective 4.1

Extend alliances and partnerships with public, school, health sector, government, non-profit & corporate libraries within B.C.


  • Lester B. Pearson College of the Pacific welcomed as an affiliate member of ELN

  • ELN organized and participated in the BC Library Showcase at the Canadian Library Association 1998 conference

  • held discussions with Ministry of Education and Library Services Branch, Ministry of Municipal Affairs, regarding possible provincial licence for Encyclopedia Britannica Online

Objective 4.2

Extend partnerships on an inter-provincial basis

  • third contract finalized with Council of Prairie and Pacific University Libraries, for production of COPPUL Serials database. Anticipated release date for the database is December 1998

  • organized and convened Canadian Library Association 1998 conference session on library resource sharing in the post-interlibrary loan era

Objective 4.3

Expand national and international alliances

  • participated in International Coalition of Library Consortia; recent activities include developing draft statements on technical and statistical reporting requirements for web-based database services

  • initiated discussions with other Canadian library consortia regarding possible national site licences for selected databases

Goal 5

Generate strong and diverse support for ELN products and services

Objective 5.1

Strengthen accountability and communications framework for ELN owners and clients


  • contributed information on ELN key performance indicators for OLA report to Ministry of Advanced Education, Training and Technology

  • site visits to Kwantlen University College and Lester B. Pearson College of the Pacific

  • draft of Member Handbook completed

Objective 5.2

Pursue appropriate business opportunities to export ELN's services and expertise to other organizations or regions

  • contract secured for ELN Manager to participate in a CIDA-funded library development workshop in Indonesia

Objective 5.3

Ensure sufficient financial and human resources to meet current and long range needs

  • budget for 1998/99 approved by ELN Advisory Committee

  • ELN staff attended continuing education workshops on Copyright and Digital Licensing

  • recruited and trained two new staff members