Best practices in digital asset management for electronic texts in academic research libraries

by Cleland, William.

Abstract (Summary)
Dr. Paul Cesarini, Advisor Digital information is becoming increasingly prevalent and libraries must develop new strategies to effectively archive electronic materials. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to identify and synthesize best practices of digital asset management of electronic texts in academic research libraries. The study was a “snapshot” of major topics related to digital asset management. Minimal research has been conducted to identify best practices in this field when compared to the amount of research that has been conducted for the print domain. The main issues that are seen in existing literature are digital materials selection, funding, digital rights management (DRM), and information authenticity. Several major trends also arose from the literature, including digital library architecture, metadata standards and search strategies, and bibliographic management software. A modified Delphi study was used to gather qualitative data from librarians at several institutions within the Association of Research Libraries (ARL). Eight librarians from several ARL institutions participated in two E-mail questionnaires. Participants were selected by identifying research-extensive libraries on the ARL website and selecting potential participants based on their job titles. Data was analyzed by identifying major themes and patterns that arose in the individual responses. Participants all possessed baccalaureate degrees, but had varied educational backgrounds, representing fields such as computer science, history, humanities, and natural sciences. Most of the participants also held advanced degrees in library science. Each library represented by the participants had a unique organizational structure and used different systems and strategies. There was significant discussion about the use of proprietary versus open-source software, content management systems, and other specific digital asset management strategies. Participants revealed that each library has a specialization and fulfills a specific role within the ARL libraries. Software selection and preferred strategies and methods were also discussed by the participants, but these issues were trivial compared to more major issues raised in the responses such as the fundamental roles of digital libraries and the desire for consortia. The consensus among the participants was that digital libraries must work to cooperate within their own university libraries as well as with other digital libraries. v
Bibliographical Information:


School:Bowling Green State University

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:digital libraries electronic information resources academic


Date of Publication:

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