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The Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) partners develop innovative technical solution to improve consortial borrowing for users

The Rethinking Resource Sharing Initiative announced that the winner of the Rethinking Resource Sharing (RRS) 2012 Innovation Award is UBorrow, a project of the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC).

This award honors individuals or institutions for changes they have made to improve users’ access to information through resource sharing in their library, consortium, state or country. The CIC was recognized for its innovative contribution to resource sharing during the Rethinking Resource Sharing Policies Committee Program at ALA Annual in Anaheim.

Headquartered in the Midwest, the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) is a consortium of the Big Ten member universities plus the University of Chicago.  Collectively CIC serves 46,102 faculty and nearly half a million students.  The combined collections of the CIC and the Center for Research Libraries contain approximately 90 million volumes.

The CIC UBorrow solution marries the strengths of two different resource sharing systems to create a fast, reliable, cost-effective, scalable and unmediated consortial borrowing service that is relatively quick and easy to implement.  The service uses Relais D2D to search CIC library catalogs through Z39.50 and to determine which libraries have available copies, while using OCLC ILLiad (developed by Atlas Systems) to manage the fulfillment of requests.

The addition of Relais D2D to the CIC technology mix allows member libraries to leverage their existing ILS and ILL systems to more effectively meet their user needs, significantly reducing the need for users to recall checked-out material or for libraries to purchase multiple copies. Most importantly, this unmediated consortial borrowing system effectively makes most of the 90 million volumes held in the CIC libraries and the Center for Research Libraries readily available to library users through a single interface with a fast and predictable turnaround time and a generous loan period.

UBorrow is the result of a unique, three-way collaboration among consortia members and resource sharing software developers and an innovative approach to consortial borrowing that had not been accomplished before. http://www.cic.net/Home/Projects/Library/ReciprocalBorrowing/UBorrow.aspx

Funding for the 2012 Innovation Award is provided by Relais International.

The Rethinking Resource Sharing Initiative is an ad hoc group that advocates for a complete rethinking of the way libraries conduct resource sharing in the context of the global internet revolution and all of the developments that have arisen from that.  The group is advocating for a revolution in the way libraries conduct resource sharing. For more information, please visit www.rethinkingresourcesharing.org.

Source: Mary Lehane (mlehane@yorku.ca)