January 2004 Council on the Libraries

Council on Libraries
January 12, 2004
Treasure Room, noon to 1:30 pm

Present: Halvah Armstron-Walther, Malcolm Brown, Cayelan Carey, Kathy Cottingham (Chair), Harold Frost, Teoby Gomez, Doug Irwin, Richard Lucier, Jeff Ruoff, Jerry Rutter, Barry Scherr, Larry Levine, Pamela Bagley (recorder)

Excused: David Becker, Richard D’Aveni, Stephen Taylor, William Hickey, Marianne Hirsch

Guest: Jennifer Taxman


1. Approval of Minutes
Kathy Cottingham (KC) called the meeting to order. The minutes from the Joint Council on Libraries and Council on Computing from December 4, 2003 were approved.

2. SE Baker Renovation
Richard Lucier (RL) gave an update on plans to renovate the SE wing of Baker Library. The ad hoc working group for this renovation has developed a list of “Assumptions and Programmatic Guidelines for Initial Designs”. Currently it is planned that DCAL (Dartmouth Center for the Advancement of Learning) will occupy the first floor space and CIC (Dartmouth Center for Intellectual Coalitions) will occupy the ground level. Finances for the renovation will come from money remaining from the Baker-Berry renovation and from the Provost’s Office with a separate budget for each floor of the space. Schematics of two plans for each floor were distributed which RL pointed out that these schemes were preliminary and subject to fiscal constraints. He has asked Facilities for a cost estimate for proposed schemes on each floor indicating that there is no reason to consider plans that are not financially feasible. A videoconference room is planned for DCAL which would be in addition to the videoconference room in Computing. Cyndy Pawlek will be the co-convener of the SE Baker Renovation Ad Hoc Working Group when RL leaves. RL said he hopes the renovation would be completed within a year from now—however the renovation may be complicated by systems (e.g. HVAC, fire retardant systems) which experience has shown to be difficult to renovate in Baker.

KC asked who would be housed in DCAL. RL said Tom Luxon, who has been appointed DCAL’s first director will housed there in addition to DCAL staff (yet to be determined). Havah Armstrong-Walther (HAW) asked if there would be a space for graduate students similar to the lounge/special study space for faculty planned for faculty. RL said he would raise this issue with Tom Luxon, but that a study space for graduate students was not part of the charge presented to the working group. He emphasized that although the Library is trying to facilitate the outcomes of the working group, it does not make the decisions. Larry Levine (LL) suggested that the term ‘lounge’ may refer to a functional work space that wouldn’t necessarily rule out use by graduate students. RL said graduate student space should not be confused with DCAL; that the Library had opened up some of the scholar studies for graduate students and that data collected by Jennifer Taxman about their use should be presented in a future meeting. HAW said she’d heard graduate students express confusion about whether there was a waiting list for the scholar studies and if so, who they should contact to be placed on the waiting list. Jennifer Taxman (JT) said there was a waiting list that was maintained by Mary Bingham.

3. Draft Budget for the Public Computer Replacement in the Library
RL distributed the document “Guiding Principles: Public Workstation Deployment” developed by the Library and Computing Services as a result of the Joint Council on Libraries and Council on Computing meeting in December. He also distributed an inventory of public and instructional computers in Berry, Kresge and the Instructional Centers broken down by location, computer type (Dell or Mac) and date of warranty expiration. MB said that having computers within the warranty period is important to contain computer maintenance costs. Most of the computer’s warranties will expire within the next two years. The price estimate for replacing a computer with a new one with a three year warranty, the MS Campus Agreement and licensed software for public computers is $1500 to $1700. Because components from the old machines may be reused (such as monitors), this represents a conservative estimate.

Larry Levine (LL) gave brief history leading up to the need to produce a new budget for the public computers. Before Berry was built, Computing had a budget for the 60-65 public computers were maintained in Kiewit. With Berry’s completion additional public computers were purchased without a corresponding increase in budget, due to variety of fiscal reasons. So the current budget (based on the old number of 60-65 computers) has been earmarked for the computers in the Instructional Centers.

Barry Scherr (BS) calculated that the budget for replacing machines over the next two years to be roughly $160,000 (103 computers with warranties that expire within 2 years costing ~$1600/replacement computer). MB indicated that this wasn’t indicative of an ongoing yearly budget, because of deferred maintenance and because purchase of the current public computers was unevenly distributed over the past three years (because most of the machines were purchased over a relatively short period of time using the original Baker fund). RL said another variable to consider was how many public computers were actually needed and that to address this variable ongoing data collection about public computer usage was needed. MB said that data collected last fall used an online survey and head counts. He asked the Council for specific directions on what ongoing data should be collected, recognizing that data collection requires considerable staff time and effort. KC said it would be beneficial to have head counts of computer use during the busiest times, because these represented the worst case scenario. There was discussion about when peak use times occurred and in which term. JR proposed and LL seconded a motion that head counts of public computer use be taken each term on the last day of classes and the first two days of reading period. The vote for the motion was unanimously approved. Jennifer Taxman said that her staff could accommodate that level of data collection each term. MB said this proposal needed to be taken to the Council on Computing. MB asked if the Public Computer Usage Survey should be administered again. BS suggested it be administered no more than once per year. KC said it produced useful information because students could respond with content. MB said he would administer the survey on a yearly basis.

4. Special Collections Librarian Search: Update
Jerry Rutter (JR) said the search committee had met twice and had narrowed the field from at least 25 applicants to four final applicants. John Crane, chair of the search committee had spoken with the four applicants by phone and the pool was reduced to two candidates based on their expressed interest level. The final two candidates will be giving public presentations on “Creating Special Collections and Creating Access to Them” on Jan 15 and 19. JR encouraged the CoL members to attend the presentations.

5. Librarian of the College Search: Update
KC announced that a search committee has been named. They will encourage faculty participation in the process. They were currently discussing changing the title from Librarian of the College. BS said that a title under consideration was Dean of Libraries. RL said it is common to have two titles and that librarians tend to prefer Dean of Libraries because they want to be perceived as being academic rather than administrative. KC said the committee was also working to capture what makes Dartmouth Libraries unique in the wording of the advertisement for the position. BS said they would start advertising the position as soon as possible and that the position could be filled as early as this summer or fall, but that they were not constrained to that time frame. KC said that she, Cayelan Carey, and Larry Levine were CoL members on the search committee and that comments or questions about the search could be addressed to them.

In view of this being Richard Lucier’s last CoL meeting, Doug Irwin proposed a motion to thank him on behalf of the Council for his leadership over the past three years, for his innovation in bringing the digital library to reality, and for guiding the library through difficult times. He wished him best of luck in future endeavors. The motion was seconded by LL and unanimously approved by the Council.