For immediate release | May 25, 2010

Ithaka S+R Faculty Report featured at ALCTS Forum

CHICAGO-The Association for Library Collections & Technical Services will present a presentation and discussion of the recently released Ithaka S+R faculty survey at the ALCTS Forum on Monday, June 28, at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, DC. The Forum begins at 8 a.m. in the Washington Convention Center, Ballroom B, and precedes the ALCTS President’s Program featuring Dr. Francine Berman.

Moderated by ALCTS President Mary Case, university librarian at the University of Illinois-Chicago, the presentation will raise a number of provocative hypotheses about the future of library services and collections, as well as scholarly communications more broadly in a digital world, and will lead into a vibrant discussion of the possible implications of these findings for libraries, publishers and scholarly societies. Ross Housewright and Roger C. Shonfeld of Ithaka S+R will give an overview of this study’s three major sets of findings. Brian Schottlaender, The Audrey Geisel University librarian at the University of California at San Diego, will provide commentary.

Ithaka S+R recently released this report on findings from its Faculty Survey 2009, the fourth in a series of surveys conducted over the past decade that have examined faculty attitudes and behaviors on key issues ranging from the library as information gateway and the need for preservation of scholarly material, to faculty engagement with institutional and disciplinary repositories and thoughts about open access. Among its findings:

  • Discovery and the Evolving Role of the Library

    Basic scholarly information use practices have shifted rapidly in recent years and, as a result, the academic library is increasingly being disintermediated from the discovery process, presenting libraries with some key challenges but also the opportunity to reallocate resources to other priorities.
  • The Format Transition for Scholarly Works

    Faculty members’ growing comfort in relying exclusively on digital versions of scholarly materials opens new opportunities for libraries, new business models for publishers and new challenges for preservation.
  • Scholarly Communications

    Publishers, scholarly societies, libraries, faculty members and others have laid significant groundwork for reforming various aspects of the scholarly communications system, but faculty attitudes are driven by incentives and suggest the need for continued leadership.

Roger C. Schonfeld leads the research efforts at Ithaka S+R. His work has focused on shifts in faculty attitudes and research practices in an increasingly electronic environment; shifts in teaching practices and the future of instruction; and the academic library in a digital environment, including the economics, preservation and policy issues associated with the transition from print to electronic formats for scholarly literature and government documents. Ross Housewright is a research analyst at Ithaka S+R, where his work has focused principally on evaluating shifting faculty attitudes and practices in an electronic environment and on the changing roles of the academic library in the digital age, with a particular emphasis on the policy and preservation issues of the print to electronic transition for scholarly works and government information.

The Association for Library Collections & Technical Services (ALCTS) is the national association for information providers who work in collections and technical services, such as acquisitions, cataloging, collection development, preservation and continuing resources in digital and print formats.

ALCTS is a division of the American Library Association.


Charles Wilt