Content Group - Achievements

The Content Group was established in 2013 and has members from 21 institutions. Our key mission/remit is to share information and experiences about the management of resources to facilitate enhancement of the user experience and to optimise access and discovery of content through the most effective management of content.

Our key achievements aligned with our objectives include:

  • Engaging meaningfully with publishers and suppliers in order to drive change through successful meetings with publishers like Wiley. We also developed a two-phased approach to secure detailed knowledge about the position of aggregators within the supply chain. Content SIG collated data related to structures, contacts and decision making processes at member institutions and shared this with EBSCO and ProQuest in exchange for candid responses to questions prioritised by members. This resulted in annual workshops where members sought to drive change on issues such as  DRM free ebooks, accessibility, etc.

  • Engaging with other groups locally and nationally on issues that cut right across the whole remit of NC Content group. In 2015 the Content Group voiced concerns about textbook licensing using Pearson as an example and brought it to the attention of the NC Directors Group, SCONUL, RLUK through a briefing paper. The outcome of this was the paper fed into discussions with ERWIG, SCONUL, Jisc and RLUK on issues with textbooks (prices and licensing models). Pearson invited libraries to form a library advisory panel.

  • In 2016 the Content SIG was also involved in the Jisc Decision Support & Availability Tracking eBooks pilot working with Sero Consulting. The NC group was also involved in the Ebook accessibility audit with NoWAL/SUPC in 2016.

  • The group also met with JISC in September 2019 and asked them for a more coordinated approach on gathering accessibility statements from publishers to meet the regulations. The group gathered their own list of statements and are sharing best practice on how these are being presented on their institutions library websites.

  • In March 2020 when we went into lockdown the group collaborated and shared information on the free resources that were made available to us by providers to help students get access to more online resources.

  • Following a successful Metadata/linked data event in June 2019 a Metadata/Linked Data Technical Sub-Group was established. It has met 4 times and has representation from 17 NC institutions. Its vision is that “metadata is an institutional asset which needs to be fit for discovery today and in the future”. The groups remit is helping institutions stabilise their metadata practices for the future, advocating for consistent quality metadata available in the acquisition supply chain and sharing best practice to capitalise on developments relating to linked data. The impact of the group has been to provide a regional voice for metadata and tapping into the development of a community of metadata good practice ensuring metadata has a tangible voice. 

  • We also established an Inter-Library Loans technical group that first met in 2019. This provided a forum for members with operational control of ILL services to develop best practice with relation to workflows, systems, and issues  and promote greater consistency within the sector. 

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