Volume 26, Number 3, Fall 2004

Illinois Cooperative Collection Management Program

Who We Are and What We Do

Elizabeth Clarage

The Illinois Cooperative Collection Management Program (ICCMP), a consortium of over one hundred institutions of higher education in Illinois, was founded on the commitment to a shared statewide academic library collection. Member institutions range in size from a less than 100 full-time-equivalent (FTE) enrollment, to an institution with more than 40,000 FTE. ICCMP employs a director and a graduate student assistant. The Coordinating Committee, our board, consists of nine elected members (library directors and collection development/management librarians) as well as three ex officio members. The consortium has three guiding principles: cooperative collection management; resource sharing; and continuing professional education. One way that ICCMP seeks to accomplish these principles is by giving grants to member institutions to work together in partnerships to build a stronger collection for the citizens of the state.

Each year, the consortium sends out a call for grant proposals for collaborative projects from two or more member institutions. Some of the principles of the grants program are:

  • universal benefit (demonstrable benefit to a broad constituency);
  • open physical access (materials acquired must be reasonably available to the primary constituents of the libraries in the consortium);
  • local sufficiency (grant funds are not meant to replace the need for local sufficient collections); and
  • selective participation and universal benefit (not all members participate in all projects, but should have the opportunity to respond to project ideas).

ICCMP fosters an environment for librarians to meet and work together by holding an annual bibliographers’ meeting as well as occasional workshops on topics relevant to collection development. The bibliographers’ meeting usually has a speaker, but also allows subject specialists to meet with their counterparts from other institutions. Meeting face to face often leads to further communication. A benefit of knowing colleagues around the state is a continuing atmosphere of collaboration and cooperation. Both of these activities take time and effort. ICCMP has promoted these activities for over twenty years.

ICCMP also maintains a voluntary electronic discussion list for consortium members. Members often offer duplicate or withdrawn materials to other consortium members. And, yes, ICCMP does work with vendors to offer electronic resources to our members. This is more of a sideline to our main mission, but it is part of collection building. ICCMP began in the early 1980s and continues to this day to be an organization where librarians work together to create a stronger collection for the state.

More information on the ICCMP can be found on its Web site or by contacting Elizabeth Clarage, Consortium Director, Illinois Cooperative Collection Management Program, Founders Memorial Library, Northern Illinois University, De Kalb, IL 60115, by phone: (815) 753-9168, or by e-mail.