Repost: Maximizing space at our libraries through innovation, shared collections

By Tuesday, August 13, 2013 , No comments
Maine libraries are searching for innovative ways to deal with the many challenges they are facing today, such as lack of space and budget cuts, which have affected their ability to store legacy print collections.

Growing evidence shows that many print materials were never checked out after being purchased. In addition, large-scale print digitization projects are making many low-use titles available online. Maine’s robust interlibrary loan system means that patrons have fast and easy access to materials stored in other Maine libraries. This allows libraries to discard material they can get from other reliable sources. However, the discarding process needs to be coordinated in a way to ensure that copies of the material are still accessible in Maine.

In 2010, nine Maine library partners — the Bangor and Portland public libraries, the Maine State Library, the University of Maine, the University of Southern Maine, Maine InfoNet and Bates, Colby and Bowdoin colleges — submitted a grant application to the national Institute of Museum and Library Services to create the Maine Shared Collections Strategy.

The institute approved the grant and released $821,065 to fund the Maine Shared Collections Strategy. The partners also contribute matching cost-sharing funds. The grant is administered through the University of Maine and is overseen by a project team that represents the respective library constituencies.

Original link: Bangor Daily News blog