Germanists Discussion Group Minutes – 2015 Midwinter

ALA Midwinter Meeting, Chicago

Germanists Discussion Group and Romance Languages Discussion Group Joint Meeting
Sunday, February 1, 2015
1:00 – 2:30pm
Sheraton Chicago, Erie Room


  • Heidi Madden, Duke Unviersity
  • Kristen Totleben, University of Rochester
  • Brian Vetruba, Washington University in St. Louis


I. Welcome and Introductions

II. Roundtable Discussion: A Roundtable Discussion on Issues and Trends in Collection Development: Vendor Services for European Studies (German, French, Italian)

  • Speakers:
    • Christèle Giboire, Amalivre
    • Barbara Casalini, Casalini Libri
    • Regina Lichti, Harrassowitz
  • Description: This is a great opportunity to get your questions answered by our vendor representatives! Come and learn about current trends on approval plans, orders, and European publishing. Find out what sort of reports and data vendors can supply to libraries. Discover new features in vendor databases. Prior to the discussion period, each vendor will give a brief presentation highlighting their services to libraries.
  • Christèle Giboire: Amalivre
    • Print run is going down for academic titles. There are usually a few hundred copies for first circulations and more print on demand titles.
    • Larger publishers face economic issues in France. They publish more titles so the success of a company doesn’t rely on a few titles. Birth rate of publishers in France is dynamic. Production of French publishing is consistent in numbers and quality. Social sciences titles are constant between 2013 and 2014: 2,020 in 2013 and 28 less in 2014.
    • Demographics- Literature approval plans for Post-war French writers linked to publishing less first novels by new promising authors, e.g., In 2013, in the Blanés collection 4 out of 87 authors were first authors; in 2014, 10 out of 87.
    • Authors’ list needs to be updated to account for new generation of writers. Requests for items will help inform these lists. For approval plans, requests can be made to move titles to modify approval plans, decrease collecting in a certain area, etc.
    • Examples of report offerings: track budget spending, approval plan tracking, analyzing peer institutions for examining areas of overlap and subjects not sufficiently covered, bar graph: approval duplication rate between Univ. 1 and Univ. 2 per LC class.
    • Bibliographical enhancements are currently in development. By ALA Annual, they will have peer institutions’ data in their web site.
  • Barbara Casalini, Casalini Libri
    • Publishing Trends:
      • Italy: print runs are decreasing. Number of new titles published every year in Italy is about 70,000. 22,000 is what we catalog for academic libraries.
      • Italy: there are approximately 3500 active publishers- most are very small. One of the main approval plans had publications from 1296 different publishers in FY 2013/2014.
      • Big publishers focus on translations while some smaller publishers are focusing on quality.
    • Casalini Libri’s Collection Development Services:
      • -Core Selections
      • Specialized Bibliographies: Casalini Libri can produce bibliographies in a multitude subjects.
      • Reports: whatever you need to find, it’s probably there because other libraries have already asked for a certain tool, report, approval plan data, statistics, etc. Just ask.
      • Online Advanced Search Options: notification when a title is available is e-version.
  • Regina Lichti: Harrassowitz
    • Publishing Trends:
      • Big publishers acquire smaller ones. Acquistion and integration of publishers:
      • Publisher platforms host e-books from independent publishers (de Gruyter)
      • Publishers with e-book platforms –titles only available as collections
      • Print on Demand (POD) publishers such as Akademikverlag are more common.
    • Collection Development Services:
      • EDI: Electronic Data Interchange, access setup for ebooks, publisher/aggregator platforms, support for access maintenance, analyze collaboration of libraries, ebook trial management, assistance to libraries in licensing negotiations
      • Budget control- can opt not to spend over 80% of the allocation, 3-4 months before budget deadline.
      • Examples of reports: collaborative collection display, approval plan data, collaboration with partnering institutions, peer libraries’ collection analysis
    • Updates:
      • OttoSerials, OttoEditions: project to revise both systems. They’ll look for input this summer at ALA Annual.
      • New metadata system for monographs
      • Reorganization of approval plan profiles and new title announcements
      • Collaboration with Ex Libris to develop APIs
    • For Further reference, see vendor PowerPoint slides.

III. Questions and Discussion

  • Do you think certain publishers will take on the risk for first novels? What are things we can do?
    • Amalivre: For first novels, they trust bigger publishers, read reviews for others and selectively choose.
    • Harrassowitz: requests help inform acquisitions
    • Casalini: A lot of material not being acquired because they are not with mainstream publishers- they don’t have editorial clout where and do not trust their authority. When there are materials that win a prize, they go back and get these for libraries.
  • Wanting to order something that’s not in the database:
    • Casalini: yes.
  • Do you have many titles offered in different dialects?
    • Casalini: a lot of Italian poetry books offered in different dialects.
  • Do you see trends more libraries working together to share and compare collection development plans- regional libraries ?
    • University of California: peer comparisons specializations to help make decisions on acquiring more unique titles.
  • What is not being bought?
    • Harrassowitz: we haven’t developed tools to identify these items; orphans project
  • Is there a decline in what you’re profiling over the years or an increase: trends?
    • Harrassowitz: decline
    • Amalivre: consistent
  • Social sciences books in English- how do we profile them?
    • Casalini: Look at something that’s representative of country-not too regional and not too localized. Very small proportion sent overseas.
    • Amalivre: collection in this area is not significant; not many titles
  • In Europe, is there more focus in discipline subject-related groups for collaborations?
    • No.