Developing the Research Support Library – Why? How?

Collection size and intensity has long been accepted by Librarians as an indicator of significance and value.  This concept may be called into question as changes in the institutional, economic and political environment appear to threaten its validity and sustainability. 

National comparative statistics have, until very recently, concentrated on the size and composition of the information resource base, its cost and, broadly speaking, the amount of use that it gives rise to.  Slowly, the nature of that use is receiving more attention in the statistics. Although there is some evidence in the literature of attempts to link use with value, this remains an under-developed area in the assessment of effective resource application.  The key issue for research support libraries is whether size and expenditure are causal indicators of value to research.  A recent study of the cost and use of selected research libraries (1) found existing data to be inadequate in terms of staff activity descriptions, data and outcomes.

For the purposes of this exercise the following table illustrates some underpinning elements for consideration(2).  It is based on the assumption that research support libraries should have institutional standing and that professional staff have a significant part to play in helping researchers to realise the benefits of knowledge stores both local and external.

The traditional view is that professional librarians are often scholars or subject specialists who are experts in sourcing material in a range of formats.  They have striven to develop unique collections of coherent identity.  This provides, funding allowing, a strong incentive to build up the size of the collections.

The following table is a statistical snapshot of the information resources of some significant research support libraries(2).

The associated activities of acquisition, “labelling”, storage, enabling appropriate access, development and maintenance are seen by some administrators and researchers as the core functions and purpose of a research support library.  A recent study (1) has shown that in major research libraries the purchase and maintenance of material takes up, on average,  60% of FECs (of which cataloguing is the most costly) whereas user support costs an average of 29%. It is interesting to note, in this context, that non-RLUK libraries have retained largely static staff numbers since 1999, those in large academic research libraries have increased. (3)[1]

The purpose of the research support library, its collections and services, as seen by librarians, is to play a significant role in supporting and furthering the academic endeavour of the University and contributing to its reputation.  It also contributes to academic quality within the wider academic community and is able to attract funding to acquire, develop and promote important material that will underpin significant trans-institutional research.

The literature claims that although Librarians may take pride in developing “a unique collection or critical mass of rare material” (1) and use these assets to badge their credentials as national research libraries,  many senior institutional managers see the Library as an expensive storehouse of little used material and the librarians as gatekeepers.

Key questions

Does there need to be a shift in the nature of the Library’s role and recognition of its contribution in order to maintain a meaningful role in the institutions future success?

To what extent do collection (real and virtual) boundaries separate research libraries?  This question requires consideration of just-in-time collection building as well as collaborative acquisition and access ventures.  Behind this lies the issue of appropriate and sustainable funding mechanisms both nationally and locally.

Libraries are in competition with other providers who work to a different business model.  They do not have fixed overheads and are highly accessible.  In this more flexible and demand-led environment does the concept of collections need re-scoping.

What are the risks of not adapting quickly enough?


1. CHEMS Consulting. July 2010. TRAC-based review of the National Research Libraries.  A report for HEFCE. (Unpublished).

2. SCONUL.  (2011)  Annual Library Statistics.  London: SCONUL.

3.  [2010]. Trends in the finances of higher education libraries:1999-2099, p22.http://www.rin.ac.uk/our-work/communicating-and-disseminating-research/trends-finances-uk-higher-education-libraries-1999.

Drivers for Change

Developments cast a question mark over the traditional concept of a research support library and challenge information professionals to review their role in, and contribution to, knowledge management both within an institution and on a wider front.  Not only is the face of access to resources changing, but the costs of information resources and the cost and value of the services being offered is more closely scrutinised.

Research libraries are operating in a swiftly changing environment.  The continual growth of the range of digital resources sits alongside increasingly demanding financial challenges.  The e-environment has produced rapid changes in the way in which content is provided and accessed.  Purchase and subscription models are quite different from those of the past.  At the same time the identification and location of those resources does not wholly lie in the hands of librarians.

The library sits within an organisation which in turn is responding to imperatives to support world-class research, to constantly pursue research funding, to provide for the expectations of their top researchers and to build capacity of all their researchers.  Many universities are instituting research support facilities for Early Career Researchers, and setting up Graduate Training Centres – places in which information seeking, location, evaluation and management will be taught.  The national framework for the measurement of research excellence (REF) also impacts on libraries.  In some instances libraries have seized the opportunity presented by the REF/RAE to play an integrative role in the assessment framework.  At the same time research is increasingly being conducted collaboratively, internationally, across disciplines and often virtually, sometimes supported by virtual research environments.

This context raises the question about the response of research libraries. Some specific issues concerning libraries at present are: (1,2,3,)

  • The inability to sustain comprehensive collections as budgets decline with a concomitant move to considering a just-in-time rather than a just- in-case approach to acquisition.
  • The need to revise the philosophy and goals of resource acquisition in response to print on-demand and e-access.
  • Uncertainty over the role of the library in managing the development of institutional and inter-institutional data sets and the use of data analysis software.
  • Securing funding for increased digitisation of stock, including archives, sometimes through collaborative projects.
  • The mixed experience of consortia intended to collaborate over acquisition, cataloguing, e-resource management and digital preservation.
  • The significance of commercial search engines in the development of co-operative library management services including search and discovery tools.
  • The recognition of the increasing use of mobile devicesto find, browse, and exchange information both formal and informal.
  • The increasing expectation of researchers to have immediate full-text accessto journals and other resources.
  • The role of the library in supporting institutional initiatives totrain and develop researchers through a career lifecycle including information management and publication.

Indications of libraries’ orientation to these issues can be found, for the USA, in  profile of research libraries undertaken by the Association of Research Libraries (4).  This referred to “transformative times” and noted that approaches to library assessment need an extra dimension to help illustrate the shift in the environment and its effect and to provide pointers to value and impact.

The report reviewed the amount of concern shown by member libraries to emerging, significant themes.  The responses show a move away from the traditional focus on collection building.

The most concern (30%) was shown for management and self-awareness including assessment activities and data collection.  The same level of attention was given to and services and space especially remote storage, shared storage, and building use data.

Also scoring highly, although slightly less than the above, were collaborative activities at 25%.  These included external collaboration encompassing inter-library loan, shared storage, open access journals and e-science, bibliographic enterprises linked to commercial suppliers, government depository schemes and internal partnership including promoting open access, scholarly communications, grant proposals, trans-disciplinary collaboration, leadership in copyright policy.

The topic of collections took third place (15%). The most important element being the creation of digital collections for access and as a preservation technique, e-theses, e-books, and government depositories.  Nationally distinctive collections were also mentioned.

In the UK a survey carried out on behalf of SCONUL (5) in 2010 found that the top three concerns of university librarians were:  funding and financial management, the e-environment, and policy and strategy. The emphasis on funding is substantiated in a report by LISU on trends in RLUK libraries (6) which showed that, from 1998-9 to 2008-9, library expenditure as a % of total of institutional expenditure fell. At the same time there was also an increase in the number of serials titles acquired, especially e–journals, a flattening of expenditure on information resources as a % of total library expenditure, a fall in expenditure on books and a rise of expenditure on journals  as % of expenditure on information resources.

Overall, during this time of rapid developments, attention on both sides of the Atlantic seems to be concentrated on strategy, role, collaboration and service developments during a time when cost and value are under close scrutiny.

Some questions

Fuelled by a response to swiftly changing planning horizons, libraries will need to be more responsive and flexible and develop significant partnerships.   Can this be achieved?

The balance of activity may need to shift to a less solid and reliable base. Will changes in the service offer have longevity?

What will professionalism consist of in a context of collaboration and direct access to information?

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  1. Anderson, R.  (2011)  The Crisis in Research Librarianship.  The Journal of Academic Librarianship.  37 (4), 289-290.
  2. ACRL Research Planning and Review Committee.   (2010)  2010 Top Tend Trends in Academic Libraries: A review of the current literature.  Chicago: ALA.
  3. Auckland, M.  (2011)  Reskilling for Research: An Investigation into the Roles and Skills of Subject Liaison Librarians Required to Effectively Support the Evolving Needs of Researchers.  London: RLUK (unpublished).
  4. Potter, W. G. et al.  (2011)  ARL Profiles : Research Libraries 2010. Washington D.C.: ACRL
  5. Priority Research Limited.  (2010)  SCONUL Top Concerns Survey 2010.  London: SCONUL.
  6. White, S. & Creaser, C.  (2010)  SCONUL Library Statistics : Trends 1998-9 to 2008-9.  Loughborough: LISU.

The Library and the Institution

  • Do we need to re-evaluate the library’s relationship to the University?  Why?  What might happen if we do not?
  • Does the Library contribute to the institution’s competitive advantage?
  • Does the institution have a clear developmental strategy from which the Library can take its cue?  If not, how does it position itself?
  • What is the place of research in the institutional profile?  In what ways might the Library be seen as a valuable contributor to this?
  • Does the size of the Library budget and its application reflect the pursuit of institutional goals sufficiently and in a developmental way?
  • Is the library a driving force which influences and responds to institutional strategy or is regarded as a service component of varying value to different disciplines and status groups?
  • Is it true that “librarians … busy  doing what they believe they need to do, sometimes fail to recognise what they are not being asked to do
  • What does the institution understand by a research support library?

The library director’s view – ?

The senior institutional manager’s view – “an under-utilised expensive store-house” (1)

The research administrator’s view – “keepers of books” (1)

Can the library director manage these views to consolidate a significant position for the library within the institution?

  • Should the library support the academic and research needs of the university and the larger academic community? If so how, and what are the implications and how might they be managed?

Recent literature points to the importance of contributory relationships between the library, senior institutional administrators and research administrators. The key stakeholders were identified in a RIN/RLUK report (2) as the PVC Research, the Finance Director and the Research Support Office.  These relationships are fundamentally political and are interdependent in sharing a concern to support the University’s reputation and viability.  Libraries need to communicate, in this forum, how they are changing and the opportunities for the future.

At another level, the ability of library staff to become integrated into research activity, possibly working as part of a team of specialists, could enrich the research process and develop appreciation of the value and relevance of the library’s contribution. Can Library staff step across boundaries and will researchers accept them? There is significant potential for library staff to work more with scholars with digital repositories, open source software and  provide access to datasets, papers etc. in virtual research environments.

Anderson (3) argues that whilst academics and administrators may support the concept of the library as a physical manifestation of the academic community and its endeavours, this reputation has been built on the bedrock of amassing large, but still limited, collections. He asserts that this mode of development plus the hiring of librarians “whose services are decreasingly demanded by researchers”, is not sustainable in the current environment.

A survey by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), which identified emerging themes (4) amongst its members, showed a low interest in collection building but significant interest in building digital collections and developing associated services, innovative internal collaboration , and collecting quantitative and qualitative information for assessment.  These themes represent a move away from measures of collection size, size of user population, and demand for process-driven services towards Website analytics, collection relevance and building use.  The context for these concerns was the institutional mission and the need for the library to develop related approaches as part of its own strategy.

Although these observations emanate from the United States, where institutional funding can be suddenly curtailed, there is still resonance for the UK with regard to resource justification and the service offer.  In the CHEMS review of the costs of national research libraries (5) the authors found a disappointing deficit of performance indicators which might illustrate the service offer (staff support) and associated standards for marketing to the research community.  Adequate and reliable use data for example for e-accesses were also unavailable.  These are issues which will need close attention if research support libraries deflect their Unique Selling Point from content to service and to be able to promote their contribution to the institutional mission.

The institution’s goals for research may be to produce research of high value and utility and widely cited, earn awards, prestige and honours, attract substantial grant funding and grow numbers of research students and staff.

Is the Library willing to align themselves with these goals and “make changes to services or resources that do not contribute to the institutional mission and assess themselves according to the mission?”


  1.  Association of College and Research Libraries.  (2010)  The Value of Academic Libraries: A Comprehensive  Review and Report.  Researched by Megan Oakleaf.  Chicago: Association of College and Research Libraries.
  2. Curtis+Carwright Consulting Limited.  (2011)  The Value of Libraries for Research and  Researchers: A RIN and RLUK Report.  London: RIN/RLUK.
  3. Anderson, R.  (2011)  The Crisis in Research Librarianship.  The Journal of Academic Librarianship.  37 (4), 289-290.
  4. Potter, W. G. et al.  (2011)  ARL Profiles : Research Libraries 2010. Washington D.C.: ACRL
  5. CHEMS Consulting. July 2010. TRAC-based review of the National Research Libraries.  A report for HEFCE. (Unpublished).

Value and Impact

The imperatives for change and the uncertain future role of the Library in a research-led University naturally lead to consideration of demonstrable value.   Is there evidence to show that the Library’s resources and services add clear value to research outcomes ?

National multi-library statistics (1) naturally concentrate on those aspects of provision and use which can be collected systematically.  They provide indicators of input and output – costs, demand, and scale of use, but not the application of that use. Current measures of outputs are functional and include easily quantifiable such as inter-library loans, loans, e-accesses (variable definitions), and enquiries.  Overall, even though perhaps inadvertently, these data imply that size and use equal value.  However, as Oakleaf (2) states “use is only meaningful if attached to institutional outcomes”.

Most senior administrators and academics will recognise the symbolic value of the Library in a learning and research environment.  Personal and anecdotal examples of important contributions made by the Library are not lacking, but they rarely indicate the essential integration of library services into the academic framework, system, and processes, especially in the area of research.  Universities or researchers can only occasionally observe that “we achieved this and part of that achievement was attributable to the library”.

Some libraries have actively researched the potential for developing their contribution to research support. Many carry out internal investigations to clarify use and value, although these tend to be localised and have not yielded adequate definitions of activity and related metrics.  It is here that the library’s strategic value needs most illumination.  The paradox may be that that the more library services are integrated with academic activity the more difficult it will become to determine a direct relationship.

The setting for an exercise to determine value should ideally be the institutional and discipline-led strategies regarding research.  Once the library has identified measures of success which are significant to the institution it needs to consider in what ways it can help their achievement and to state those ways clearly as part of its mission. This may help to clarify the link between library input and its effect on research.

How can we help to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of research?

Suppose research activity is measured by publication output, grant proposals, grants obtained, conference output, textbooks, awards, patents, consultancy/advisory work.

Is it feasible to link library-related activity to these outputs?  Some studies have found links between researcher behaviour and the library contribution.  For example time spent reading (or its surrogate) may influence effective grant preparation, consultancy, current awareness, the generation of new ideas, improve research results and alter the focus of research.

Attempts to forge these links require keen sense of pragmatism.  Studies have linked citations to grant income generation.  They have found that e-resources can help researchers to be more productive and facilitate the integration of resources into proposals, articles and reports.  But, it should be noted, the system-generated e-use data are not robust nor do they, in isolation, indicate the value of the use.

Similarly library expenditure has been indirectly linked to RAE outcomes but this may simply show that the “best” institutions (those with more money) have the best RAE outcomes and not that there is a causal link between library resources and services and research outcomes.

Oakleaf (2) suggests that a systematic approach to data collection is needed, one which links a selected range of data elements, representing specific library research support activities, to pre-defined research outcomes.  This last should be available in institutional or Faculty records.

A report to HEFCE on the FECs of UK National Research Libraries (3) noted the paucity of data for services which could be attributable to research support.  It notes that dealing with enquiries, access to e-materials, user support of various types, use of group study rooms, and retrieval of material as useful data in this respect.  Some university libraries are developing services targeted at researchers.  These and the more traditional services need careful definition and a clear sense of how they will benefit the researcher.  This supposition then needs tracing through to outcomes.

As digital content grows, many researchers are not aware of the library’s contribution to the acquisition, organisation, location and access to these resources. Their supporting role is hidden.  Can research support libraries afford to allow this perception to remain? During the decade from 1999 to 2009 there was a vigorous growth of institutional income from research grants and contracts income.  Has the library contributed to this in any way?

Qualitative information garnered through surveys (4) or focus groups can be heartening.  For example “They (liaison librarians) provide an invaluable service which facilitates much research, and prevents duplication of experimentation”.  But this kind of anecdotal information needs transmuting into hard evidence if it is to have institutional impact.  A report by the Research Information Network and Research Libraries UK (5) provides a map which links library characteristics to end benefits.  This is a useful schema.  However the library input needs to be more specific and linked directly to quantifiable outcomes.  As institutional prestige and reputation may beassessed via “league tables”, library data would need to be comparable between institutions.

To some extent this would mean embarking on a journey during which researchers and academic staff, in general, are enabled to develop a fuller appreciation of the expertise and skills which can fuel library research support.  At the same time librarians need to develop a realistic assessment of where their contribution will be most valued and why.

Some lack of awareness was shown by a recent survey (4), which contributed to a regional study of the impact of academic liaison librarians.  This showed that the librarians failed to recognise the importance to academics of giving copyright advice, putting content in the institutional repository, and finding an impact factor for a journal. They overestimated the importance of doing a literature search and teaching.  The same study showed a difference between what librarians offer (and presumably think what is needed) and how researchers behave.  The library-related activities which researchers said that they had most often undertaken during the last twelve months were: read an e-journal, used MetaLib, and used a library database.  All of these were independent and unmediated.  Were librarians aware of the nature and scale of this activity?

It is possible that there is a gap between what librarians think they can usefully offer and how researchers actually use library services.  In his hard-hitting article Anderson (6) states “Value that is not valued is not valuable”.   We acquire resources and offer services which we believe to be  valuable but researchers choose  whether or not to spend  time on our offerings based on the value that they expect to gain from doing so”.[1]


  1. SCONUL.  (2011)  Annual Library Statistics.  London: SCONUL.
  2. Association of College and Research Libraries.  (2010)  The Value of Academic Libraries: A Comprehensive  Review and Report.  Researched by Megan Oakleaf.  Chicago: Association of College and Research Libraries.
  1. CHEMS Consulting. July 2010. TRAC-based review of the National Research Libraries.  A report for HEFCE. (Unpublished).
  2. Cooke, L. et al. (2011) Evaluating the Impact of Academic Liaison Librarians on Their User Community: A Review and Case Study.   New Review of Academic Librarianship.  17 (1), 5-30.
  3. Key Perspectives Limited. (2007)   Researchers’ Use of Academic Libraries and their Services:  A Report commissioned by RIN and CURL.  London:RIN/CURL.
  4. Anderson, R.  (2011)  The Crisis in Research Librarianship.  The Journal of Academic Librarianship.  37 (4), 289-290.

Services and Staff

Library directors lead strategy, policy and placement within the institution and externally, whilst the professional staff realise the library offer on the ground.  From one perspective they may be seen as a questionably costly element in the library’s budget, from another the critical spearhead which can help to transform the relationship between the library and researchers.

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Supporting Researchers

Researchers are time-poor and focussed on the immediate demands of the research process.  They tend to have a limited view of what librarians can offer them.  They have “ persistent confidence in their self-sufficiency as information users” (1), expect digital delivery of, scholarly information in journals (2) and  have little sense of the significance and value information management skills, or their need to improve them, unless a new project or stage in project demands it.  “Virtually none of them … begin a research project at the library’s website. (1)

Value and contribution

Indicators of research value to the institution largely consist of metrics which provide evidence of comparative quality or significance.

Researchers on the other hand are conscious of the research community locally, nationally and internationally in their field. Peer evaluation, intelligence and coterminous work are of primary interest.  This fuels their sense of where opportunities for future work might lie and, in some fields, may indicate the potential for commercial application.

The research community is one which librarians may find difficult to penetrate.  It is one where personal relationships count and each of those fulfils a need.  Librarians have to respond to a felt need and offer solutions which are clear, easy, and timely, add immediately recognisable value to a project, and free the researcher to do the research.  Researchers are impatient with structured cumbersome approaches to information and data management, bibliometrics and information skills training.

Can research support libraries address both the universities’ and researcher’s requirements?

From a strategic and operational point of view the response to changes in the research environment (funder requirements, publication modes and associated legal issues, e-access to information sources etc.) needs a concerted and collaborative response by libraries if they are to be accepted as offering essential and effective research support.   Formalised, inter-institutional approaches to acquisition, storage and access, including metadata, will not only help libraries to realise opportunities, it will also address the urgent issues of reduced budgets. This last not only threatens the ability to retain “collections” strength but also inhibits innovation.

Key aspects of the changing research environment:

  • the researcher’s need for speed and convenience in identifying and accessing information
  • the growth of, and demand for, digital content
  • developments in scholarly communications and , including funder’s requirements
  • the development and management of data sets
  • information-seeking behaviour centred on mobile technology
  • direct paid- for access to journal content
  • reliance on fast, easy and cheap commercial search engines
  • commercial approaches to managing information-related elements of the research process (e.g. Ovid)
  • the need to capture research output and disseminate it more widely
  • the need to develop metadata standards for effective access to information and its communication
  • writing grant applications for multi-disciplinary and international research and with open access mandates
  • the need to digitise archive material and to collaboratively develop preservation and access modes

How might libraries respond?

  1. Some of the above developments are significantly affecting the way researchers find information and it is unlikely that this tide can be stemmed. However there are opportunities for libraries to grasp the initiative on behalf of the researchers. These are the broad and complex areas of data management, digitisation and preservation, publication and access.  All of these require the development of specific skills and partnership working within and between institutions.  As Kroll and Forsman (3)see it “…universities are doing a uniformly poor job of storing, maintaining and providing access to the discoveries they are asking their faculty to pursue”.

Researchers are aware of the resonance of these issues but unwilling and unlikely to play a proactive part in resolving them.  If librarians can do it and provide standardised and simple approaches, researchers will benefit greatly and recognise the value.

Such work would continue the role which libraries have recently played in helping to transform the information landscape through e-access.  Much of this effort, and its resulting value, are hidden both from researchers and institutional administrators.  Involvement in more wide-ranging infrastructural issues, developed on a large scale and in partnership with other experts, could evidence and substantiate the professional librarian’s contribution to the management of research.

  1. Allied to this is the potential for librarians to contribute to formal training programmes for doctoral students and early career researchers.  Again this would involve advocacy and partnership at a local and national level.  Many organisations (JISC, Vitae, RIN, RLUK the UK Graduate Centre) are recommending such a development and many universities have begun programmes although approaches vary as do contributors. The Researcher Development Framework put forward by Vitae (4) offers a model which contains specific “Domains” such as “Knowledge Base” and “Professional Conduct” to which librarians could make an informed and experienced contribution.  Some libraries contribute to institutional researcher training programmes, some do not.  Although individual, experienced researchers, immersed in funded projects, are not hospitable to structured training these programmes do offer libraries a chance to make a recognised contribution, with institutional backing, at specific points in the development of researchers.
  1. Another, slightly more innovative approach to research support suggested by some writers (5, 6), is for liaison librarians to become integral to the research process.  (Academic) liaison librarians pride themselves on their core, defining, role in relating to academic staff.  They would welcome more involvement as a natural extension of this role.

Enriching though this experience may be, there are a number of stumbling blocks to consider before embarking on a wholesale commitment.  First and foremost is the resource- intensive nature of pro-active partnership and the likely scale, variability, and scope of demand.  Secondly there will be a need to move away from the library’s traditional service culture to ask “What can researchers get out of this?” rather than “what can we offer?”  Thirdly is the need for liaison librarians to fully appreciate the culture and values of each discipline and adapt their approach accordingly.  There may be discipline differences with regard to the generation of ideas, the information base, funder’s methods and requirements, publication and promotion channels, the possible application of commercial value, and the culture of sharing results.  Some disciplines are also proprietorial about the conduct of their research and have never relied on library support (7).

Some writers (1,7,6) advocate the need for librarians to understand the research life-cycle in order to offer relevant support.  Kroll and Forsman (3) suggest a pathway through the cycle as follows:

  • idea generation – identifying funders and understanding their requirements (especially important for multi-disciplinary and international research)
  • writing grant applications
  • resource-finding,
  • managing information and data (acquiring, storing, analysing),
  • report writing
  • choosing publication modes.

Some libraries have already aligned their liaison staff with some aspects of the process.  Some have re-structured to support such activity, sent people out into departments, surveyed needs and responded to them.  Services have been developed in the areas of bibliometrics, institutional repositories, data management, publication policies, IPR, digitised special collections etc.  Some of these initiatives have been a response to institutional lacunae; some have arisen through a serendipitous meeting of departmental need and available library expertise.  Although general statements have been made about the need for liaison staff to re-skill, be adaptable, be able to work in multi-specialist teams, have deep subject knowledge and informatics skills etc., there is, at present, no consolidated professional library approach to mapping library skills and knowledge in detail, onto the requirements of the research process.  Auckland (5) has pointed out that there are already competitors in the field of research support, sometimes through specially appointed staff within a department, or through commercial products.

The reality may be that most researchers are unaware of what professional library staff have to offer and are not convinced of their relevance or likely value (8,10,5,11).

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Q.  If research support libraries are to move away from a collection-centred approach to one focussing on service, which services are likely to be, economically feasible, sustainable in terms of need and value, and consolidate the library’s position in the essential academic infrastructure of a university ?


  1.  Anderson, R.  (2011)  The Crisis in Research Librarianship.  The Journal of Academic Librarianship.  37 (4), 289-290.
  2. Stewart, C.  (2011)  The Next Chapter: Measuring the Pace of Change for Print Monograph Collections.  Journal of Academic  Librarianship.  37 (4), 355-357.
  3. Kroll, S & Forsman, R.  (2010)   A Slice of Research Life: Information Support for Research in the United States. Report commissioned by OCLC Research in support of the RLG partnership.  Ohio: OCLC.
  4. Vitae.  (2011)  The Researcher Development Framework.  Cambridge:  Careers Research and Advisory Centre (CRAC) Limited.
  5. Auckland, M.  (2011)  Reskilling for Research: An Investigation into the Roles and Skills of Subject Liaison Librarians Required to Effectively Support the Evolving Needs of Researchers.  London: RLUK (unpublished).
  6. Williams, K.  (2009)  A Framework for Articulating New Library Roles.  Research Library Issues: a bi-monthly Report from ARL, CNI and SPARC, No. 265, 3 – 8.
  7. Cooke, L. et al. (2011) Evaluating the Impact of Academic Liaison Librarians on Their User Community: A Review and Case Study.   New Review of Academic Librarianship.  17 (1), 5-30.
  8. Curtis+Carwright Consulting Limited.  (2011)  The Value of Libraries for Research and  Researchers: A RIN and RLUK Report.  London: RIN/RLUK.
  9. Association of College and Research Libraries.  (2010)  The Value of Academic Libraries: A Comprehensive  Review and Report.  Researched by Megan Oakleaf.  Chicago: Association of College and Research Libraries.