Boston, MA – February 24, 2020: The Eastern Academic Scholars' Trust (EAST) is pleased to announce that twelve libraries within the University System of Maryland and Affiliated Institutions (USMAI) Library Consortium are joining the EAST shared print program. These libraries will join the Loyola - Notre Dame Library, a fellow USMAI member, which has been an EAST member since early 2017. The new EAST members are:
- Bowie State University
- Coppin State University
- Frostburg State University
- Morgan State University
- Salisbury University
- St. Mary's College of Maryland
- Towson University
- University of Baltimore
- University of Maryland, Baltimore County
- University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science
- University of Maryland, Eastern Shore
- University of Maryland, Global Campus
Collectively, these thirteen USMAI libraries have been working since 2017 to analyze their collective print monograph collections and develop a model to retain unique, scarcely held, and frequently used scholarly titles. Their recent decision to join EAST was based on a desire to better align their retention model with the established EAST model, and to take advantage of other benefits of EAST membership including improved sustainability of the effort, and more distributed and coordinated governance. In addition to sharing their retention commitments with the larger EAST membership, the USMAI libraries will have borrowing access to millions of additional items not currently held by any of their libraries.
The addition of twelve libraries brings the total number of EAST members to 77, 72 of whom are retention partners committed to retaining print monographs and/or serials and journals for an initial period of 15 years (from the original June 2016 retention date). To date, EAST's current retention partners have made commitments to retain over 9 million monographs and some 19,000 serial and journal titles. These items represent scholarly content that, as libraries reconfigure and reclaim space to meet the needs of today's research and teaching institutions, might have been discarded without any guarantee they would be preserved by other libraries for future scholarly use.
EAST is a pioneer in developing a large-scale shared print program focused both on preserving print scholarly content and ensuring it is made available through standard inter-library loan services. An important component of EAST's work is to analyze and model retention of print collections. The USMAI libraries will use the GreenGlass decision support software from OCLC to continue analyzing their shared collections and to bring their retention model in alignment with the EAST group. EAST works with both OCLC and the GoldRush Library Content Comparison System from the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries for collection analysis.
Commenting on the decision of these libraries to join EAST, USMAI Executive Director Chuck Thomas said, "EAST is a national leader in designing a sustainable and distributed strategy to ensure the survival of the printed scholarly record. The decision by thirteen of our consortium's seventeen member libraries to join EAST will benefit those libraries by distributing the overall shared workload across a much larger number of other like-minded libraries. This strategy will help ensure we are maintaining critical long-term access to print materials for our students, faculty, and researchers. The collective and coordinated decision-making and shared workload among EAST members will allow the participating USMAI libraries to more confidently make decisions about their own local print collection retention priorities, while also being able to rely upon the collective lending, borrowing, and sharing agreements among EAST libraries. As with other consortial collaborations and partnerships, we anticipate that joining EAST will help our participating libraries support larger shared goals and values, but also be able to devote more local resources to meeting specific local institutional needs."
Matthew Sheehy, University Librarian at Brandeis University and a member of the EAST Executive Committee, added: "We are pleased to welcome these additional USMAI libraries to EAST. Their proven commitment to collaboration and ongoing work in shared print are well-aligned with EAST's mission. Expanding the monograph retention commitments of EAST with the addition of those from the USMAI libraries benefits all of our members and best ensures we can provide ongoing access to these scholarly resources for generations to come."
Libraries interested in joining EAST can contact Susan Stearns at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
The Eastern Academic Scholars' Trust (EAST) is a shared print initiative involving 77 academic and research libraries in 11 states from Maine to Florida. EAST is focused on retaining unique, scarcely held, and frequently used scholarly monographs, serials and journals in support of scholarship, research and teaching. EAST also participates as members of both The Partnership for Shared Book Collections and the Rosemont Shared Print Alliance as part of its focus on furthering collaboration and cooperation across shared print with the goal of expanding shared collective collections of scholarly materials.
The USMAI Library Consortium includes seventeen college and university libraries from public and private institutions within the State of Maryland. Founded more than thirty years ago for the purpose of sharing a single, centrally-managed online catalog system, the consortium has expanded its activities during that time to include other shared platforms and tools, no-cost borrowing and lending of physical collections among member institutions, a portfolio of group-licensed electronic information resources, a shared staff development and training program, and other shared expertise and practices.