Strategic Advisory Board Meeting Minutes - March 15, 2012

Present on call: John Butler, Tricia Cruse, Todd Grappone, Julia Kochi, Sarah Pritchard, Ed Van Gemert (recorder), Bob Wolven, Jeremy York.

Absent from call: Paul Soderdahl.

1. (Revised 3-15-12) Continued discussion of a new charge for an advisory group to be recommended to the new HathiTrust Board of Governors.

The present Strategic Advisory Board recognizes a continued need for an independent group to develop strategy and provide advice with reporting lines to the HathiTrust Board of Governors.

Advisory Group strategic responsibilities include:

  1. Prioritize a development agenda (within an annual budget allocation process) and recommend policy for that development.
  2. Establish a framework for developing policy and advancing strategic initiatives for the HathiTrust corpus as well as the HathiTrust organization.
  3. Establish a transparent process to populate a strategic framework; inviting, evaluating, ranking and launching development initiatives from HathiTrust partner institutions.
  4. Develop a strategic direction road map related to HT service programs, e.g. How best to assess service expansion beyond text and book formats?
    1. Identify competing priorities,
    2. Evaluate membership benefits,
    3. Determine costs
  5. Provide coordination, evaluation and assessment of programs and initiatives.

Clarification/discussion with the Board of Governors is required in areas including:

By-laws should specify:

Clearly specify the relationship between the Board of Governors and an advisory group. Specify the charge, scope and authority for each group.

Clarify roles as the group’s advisory function is separate from the duties of the Board of Governors, the Executive Committee, and the HathiTrust operations staff.

Articulate the role of the Executive Committee. Legal, financial, operational decisions that require quick turnaround?

Indicate a process for how new committees and working groups are to be established, who they report to, how charges are developed and approved, and how new ideas are to be vetted with governance groups and the membership.

2. Collection Analytics:

Todd Grappone (UCLA) provided the following background for today’s discussion:

Every collaborative online library project needs analysis if we understand what we have and what others would like us to share. The OCLC analysis tool, though good is incomplete. The ability for OCLC to serve as a robust collection analysis tool is limited, it’s all a one-off. How can the HT grow and bring in new members if we can't do sophisticated content analysis? We should look at the current state of tools (OCLC, PAPR?) and perform a gap analysis based on our needs. How do we compare HT content to analog complementary information (books linked to journals linked to newspapers etc).

Questions for SAB:

  1. Is there interest in HT creating an analytics program similar (perhaps in competition with) OCLC?
  2. Is there interest in creating a service that would link HT content with similar (e.g. by subject area) to a knowledgebase like PAPR?
  3. What would this tool look like beyond subject and metadata aggregation?
  4. What are the questions that Collections Council can’t answer?
  5. What books in the public domain are not yet in the HT?
  6. Within the UC or compared to other institutions where are our collection strengths and how does that relate to the published record?

Several key questions/issues emerged in SAB discussion including:

  • How can HT leverage and best use the information it now has for its membership?
  • What information can HT tell me about “my” collection in comparison to others?
  • What benefits can HT offer to non-contributing members? Are there services such as data analysis, collection analysis that could be extended to a new category of potential members?
  • What is not digitized and where is it?

Todd Grappone, Bob Wolven and Jeremy York agreed to meet to shape a draft charge taking these items into consideration.

3. HT Services Committee discussion

Ideas generated regarding the need for a HT services committee, including:

User Assessment:

  • Is there something we can learn from how people are using HT?
  • Data, findings that we can apply to development, improve services?
  • How do people use HT? Faculty, students, general public?
  • Do they get what they need?
  • Gap analysis? What it can do now? What I’d like it to do?
  • Validate expressed needs.
  • Findings can help inform SAB, Exec, Board decisions.
  • Services to overall users of HT too. And enhanced services to members.

Skills needed - Committee composition to include:

  • End user researchers
  • Public services librarian(s)
  • Assessment-- someone who works directly with graduate students and faculty advance researchers, consultation staff
  • Liaison to HTRC for computational work
  • Technical expertise, (someone who knows what’s available elsewhere)
  • Cross section of stakeholders from HT libraries

SAB will proceed in drafting a charge that will be presented to the new Board of Governors.

John Butler, Tricia Cruse and Ed Van Gemert will draft a charge for SAB review.


Upcoming agenda item:

Plan a meeting with the HT Research Center folks