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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Carmel J. Yurochko, BA, MLIS (Duquesne University)
Description: A collection of 12 papers simultaneously copublished as The Serials Librarian, volume 47, Number 4, 2005, this book offers experiences from the field on topics ranging from electronic journals to electronic resource management systems. It ranges from homegrown systems to vendor ready systems.
Purpose: Management of electronic journals and electronic resources is not an easy matter; it is in fact a complex challenge. Collected papers in this book clearly show the shift taking place in libraries regarding the acquisition, access, and management of electronic journals and electronic resources. It further makes publicly known what those in the field intuitively know — workflows and processing of electronic resources are not the same as those of print materials and changes need to be made.
Audience: All librarians in the academic arena should read this book to catch them up on the changes occurring in libraries today. Most importantly, the acquisition, serials, and electronic resources librarians should be required to read this book to give credence to their experiences. Additionally, this is a must read for university librarians and technical services librarians in order for them to understand the changes needed in workflows, processing, etc.
Features: Described in this book are the wide ranges of challenges brought on by the proliferation of electronic journals and electronic resources in libraries and the variety of techniques developed to handle them. The papers run the gamut from in-house developed spreadsheets, to homegrown management systems, to vendor management systems. Also included is a very enlightening discourse delineating the workflows retooling needed to deal with the shift to predominantly electronic resources. The bibliographies at the end of each paper as well as the index are very useful.
Assessment: Finally — a book that gets to the heart of the matter. Not just a theoretical work, this is experience from the field and of value to all. The title is a misnomer; the book is more far-reaching and inclusive than the title leads one to believe. If the charge of this book is to detail the paradigm shift occurring in libraries, than it has successfully fulfilled its mission. A highly recommended read for all librarians.