Working Group Connection, September 2021: projects via Information Policy & Analysis Topic Committee

Co-chairs of the IPA topic committee are: Athena Hoeppner (University of Central Florida) and Jack Maness (University of Denver).

Content Platform Migrations Working Group

Co-chairs: Athena Hoeppner (University of Central Florida); Kimberly Steinle (Duke University Press)
Working Group Web page 
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

This effort, which began in mid-2019, is designed to improve communications between stakeholders when a publisher moves content from one hosting platform to another. It lists the core concepts, approaches, and tasks to facilitate a successful migration with minimal disruption to the libraries and other vendors affected, as well as the publisher itself and the content platform vendors. Ultimately, end users enjoy the most benefit from stakeholder adoption of the principles outlined in the Recommended Practice, as their access to necessary content is unimpeded. 

The Recommended Practice describes various areas of the process, includes specific recommendations and responsibilities for publishers, platform vendors, and libraries, as well as definitions for terms, a list of standards and vendors, and a downloadable task checklist that can be customized by a process adopter. The draft was available for public comment in Spring 2021; Working Group members spent the summer examining the comments and making relevant edits to the document. The next stage is an editorial review before the Working Group approves it and transmits it to the Information Policy & Analysis Topic Committee for its approval before NISO publication, which is anticipated within the next month. 

Athena Hoeppner and Tom Beyer discussed the group's work on the September 2021 Open Teleconference and on the NISO ALA Update session in June. Tom Beyer, Craig Griffin, Matthew Ragucci and Xiaoyan Song plan to discuss the Recommended Practice work at the Charleston Conference in November. 


Project Website

NISO provides support and expertise to the SeamlessAccess project in order to help enable a more streamlined online access experience for researchers, students, and others when using scholarly collaboration tools, information resources, and shared research infrastructure. Over the last six months, the ongoing work of SeamlessAccess has resulted in several outcomes from ongoing work; described in the previous Working Group Connection from March

The SeamlessAccess Contract Language working group published an Entity Category Use Case report, which outlines for libraries and service providers which of the newly created Entity Categories should be used for a set of common use cases. This report was published for comment; those comments were collected and will be taken into consideration for the final publication of the report in the larger Contract Language Toolkit which should be ready for publication this year. 

The project also published a new section of its website dedicated to educational materials about SeamlessAccess and Federated Authentication. Currently featured in the Learning Center are a series of videos as well as a case study from Georgetown University Medical Center Library that outlines benefits they found using SeamlessAccess for their users and their process and rationale behind choosing to emphasize federated authentication for those users.

In addition to these new public-facing reports and videos, SeamlessAccess continues to provide a stable and successful service that makes research easier for users, and has increased the number of publishers that have integrated the service into their own products.

SERU (Shared E-Resource Understanding) Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Adam Chesler (American Institute of Physics), Anne McKee (Greater Western Library Alliance)
SERU Standing Committee Web page
Publication: SERU Recommended Practice (NISO RP-7-2012)

The SERU Recommended Practice was updated in 2012 to be more flexible for use with online products beyond e-journals, and is supported by its Standing Committee who works to publicize SERU and educate libraries and publishers via direct contacts and public presentations at industry conferences.  The SERU website pages are available to help publishers and libraries understand and use the SERU material.

SUSHI (Standardized Usage Statistics Harvesting Initiative) Standing Committee

Co-chairs: James Van Mil (University of Cincinnati), Oliver Pesch (EBSCO Information Services) 
SUSHI Standing Committee Web page
Publications: SUSHI standard (ANSI/NISO Z39.93-2014)
COUNTER-SUSHI Implementation Profile (NISO RP-14-2012)

This Standing Committee provides maintenance and support for ANSI/NISO Z39.93, The Standardized Usage Statistics Harvesting Initiative (SUSHI) Protocol, and acts as the maintenance group for the COUNTER schema by providing recommendations to COUNTER and making changes to the COUNTER XML schemas (as approved by COUNTER). When COUNTER 4 was released it necessitated relevant changes to the SUSHI schema and applicable updates to the SUSHI workroom pages.  More recently, the SUSHI Standing Committee has been discussing the impact of the COUNTER 5 Code of Practice on its material; for example, the possible use of multiple schemas to support various aspects of COUNTER and/or the adoption of SUSHI-Lite as a mechanism for transfer of data. 

Note that the SUSHI Server Registry which was hosted on the NISO SUSHI site has been incorporated into the overall COUNTER Registry of Compliance.   The Standing Committee is also working to ensure that SUSHI support materials are congruent with USUS, the community web site.

Transfer Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Sophia Anderton (British Institute of Radiology), Linda Wobbe (SCELC) 
Transfer Standing Committee Web page 
Publication: Transfer Recommended Practice (NISO RP-24-2019)

The most recent version of the Transfer Code of Practice, Version 4 was published in 2019. This Code of Practice helps publishers ensure that content remains accessible by readers and librarians when a journal or set of journals is transferred between parties, and supports a smooth process with minimal disruption. Publishers are asked to endorse the Code, and to abide by its principles wherever it is commercially reasonable to do so. Supporting publishers are included in a list of endorsers on the Transfer website.  The Transfer Alerting Service, sponsored by the ISSN Agency, facilitates communication about journal transfers, and includes a database where details about transfers can be searched. 

The members of the Transfer Standing Committee are responsible for encouraging publisher endorsement and planning outreach, education and training activities. Currently, the Standing Committee is reviewing its communications and materials around the Transfer Alerting Service and turning attention to elements of the Transfer Recommended Practice that may need to be updated in a future revision. 

Transfer SC members Heather Staines discussed the initiative on the NISO ALA Update session in June

Z39.7 Data Dictionary Standing Committee

Chair: Martha Kyrillidou, QualityMetrics
Z39.7 Standing Committee

The purpose of ANSI/NISO Z39.7-2013 Information Services and Use: Metrics & Statistics for Libraries and Information Providers - Data Dictionary is to assist the information community by indicating and defining useful quantifiable information to measure the resources and performance of libraries and to provide a body of valid and comparable data on American libraries. It identifies standard definitions, methods, and practices relevant to library statistics activities in the United States. Any user of the online standard may submit suggested changes. The Standing Committee then reviews these suggestions during its scheduled conference calls.  As part of its work, the Standing Committee scans and reviews the statistical survey landscape and examines other assessment efforts--including use of particular vocabularies--in the community for effects on the Data Dictionary. 

The Z39.7 Standing Committee is currently finalizing a new draft of the standard. It is expected that this updated draft will be made available to NISO Voting Members for their approval in the coming months. After subsequent ANSI approval, it is hoped that updated standard will be published this year. In the meantime, the Standing Committee has assembled resources for a separate appendix to the standard which will capture ongoing work (projects and tools) related to assessment, and has been discussing recent meetings of interest and updates to various industry surveys.

For notifications about approved future revisions to the standard, subscribe to the Z39.7 notification mailing list.

New Project: Unique Electronic Resource Package Identifiers

Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

E-resources are frequently purchased as packages, which can range in size from a handful of titles to hundreds of thousands. Currently, these packages can only be identified by their name in the supply chain, within elements such as invoices, publisher websites, knowledge bases, etc. However, names are inherently ambiguous, so this causes problems that affect all stakeholders—libraries, content providers and platforms, knowledge base providers, and even users.

The NISO Unique Electronic Resource Package Identifiers Working Group will evaluate and create recommendations for a unique identifier to enable disambiguation between packages, which can be used across the supply chain. This identifier will allow all stakeholders to streamline and simplify their processes, and to more easily track changes. It will also provide libraries with clear information about which titles a package contains, enabling them, for example, to manage claims when journals move between publishers. 

For more information or to volunteer for the working group, contact Nettie Lagace.

Christine Stohn (Ex Libris) and Athena Hoeppner (University of Central Florida), project sponsors, are planning to present on the initiative with Julie Zhu (IEEE) at the Charleston Conference in November.