Boston, MA – June 30, 2015: The Eastern Academic Scholars' Trust [EAST], a major new shared print initiative, launches on July 1st with important grant support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Davis Educational Foundation. The 47 member libraries of EAST, across New England, New York and Pennsylvania, will collaborate to retain agreed upon titles in their local circulating collections as well as make them available to lend to other EAST members, thereby ensuring continued access to the scholarly record of print monographs and journals.
During the initial two year implementation project, EAST libraries will conduct a collection analysis, design and analyze a sample-based validation study, secure retention agreements, plan for future EAST membership, and begin to explore reciprocal agreements with other regional and national shared print programs to create a broader network of mutual benefits and services.
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is providing $995,000 for use over approximately two years to support the development of this distributed retention network for print monographs. The Davis Educational Foundation is providing $400,000 over a three-year period in direct support of the collection analysis.
This analysis of EAST circulating monograph collections, to be conducted by Sustainable Collection Services, is among the largest group collection comparisons to date and will identify uniquely or rarely held titles as well as those with little use to support decisions about the number of copies to retain across the group. According to John Unsworth, Vice Provost for Library & Technology Services and Chief Information Officer at Brandeis University: "The EAST collection analysis and validation will provide the basis for trusting the commitments of consortial members to retain specific monographs over stated periods of time. This work will also suggest the level of redundancy required in order to ensure the availability of titles retained in circulating collections."
Laura Wood, Director of the Tisch Library at Tufts University, and co-Principal Investigator with Unsworth on the Mellon Foundation grant, commented: "We know that our libraries can't succeed in isolation when meeting the needs of our respective communities. EAST will provide the infrastructure so that academic and research libraries can collaborate on a deeper level. It is a pragmatic approach that will allow members to make more informed decisions benefitting both local and global needs for scholarship."
An Executive Committee composed of representatives from member institutions will oversee the governance and development of EAST. The Boston Library Consortium will act as the host institution for EAST with responsibility for staffing, fiscal oversight, and grant management.
About the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Founded in 1969, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation endeavors to strengthen, promote, and, where necessary, defend the contributions of the humanities and the arts to human flourishing and to the well-being of diverse and democratic societies by supporting exemplary institutions of higher education and culture as they renew and provide access to an invaluable heritage of ambitious, path-breaking work.
For more information on the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, see https://www.mellon.org/
About the Davis Educational Foundation
The Davis Educational Foundation, established as a public charitable foundation in 1985, supports the undergraduate programs of public and private, regionally accredited, baccalaureate degree granting colleges and universities throughout the six New England states. Elisabeth K. Davis and Stanton W. Davis co-founded the foundation after Mr. Davis's retirement as chairman of Shaw's Supermarkets, Inc. The foundation is an expression of the couple's shared support and value for higher education and has provided close to $98 million in grants to more than 157 institutions.
For more information on the Davis Educational Foundation, see http://www.davisfoundations.org/site/educational.asp
About the Boston Library Consortium
The Boston Library Consortium is a collaborative partnership of 17 academic and research libraries in Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Hampshire providing innovative and cost-effective information resources, services and expertise that allow its member libraries to best serve the teaching, research, and scholarship of their parent institutions.