Working Group Connection, April 2022: 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 
Publication: RP-38-2021, Content Platform Migrations

NISO published this recommended practice in November. This effort focused on improving communications between stakeholders when a publisher moves content from one hosting platform to another. The document 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 main document provides context, descriptions, and definitions. Each section concludes with recommendations related to each topic, with bulleted lists of example tasks for each stakeholder group. The recommendations are also provided as a Checklist in a spreadsheet, so they can be sorted, filtered, and customized. Both versions of the Recommendations identify the stakeholder that is likely to have responsibility for a given task.

NISO is now forming a Standing Committee to take over the work of promotion and support of the Recommended Practice. If you are interested in participating, please contact Nettie Lagace, NISO Associate Executive Director.

Tom Beyer, Craig Griffin, Matthew Ragucci and Xiaoyan Song discussed the work at the Charleston Conference in November; Matthew Ragucci and Athena Hoeppner presented at NISO Plus in February. 


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. Outcomes from SeamlessAccess work over the last six month include:

A multi-piece output of the Contract Language Working Group, whose goal is to define and promote language that may be used in contracts that include provisions for Federated Access, is development of a toolkit for use in contracts between libraries and service providers; the first document from this toolkit was the Entity Category Use Case Scenarios released last year.  Most recently a Model License Agreement was made available for comments through March 31, and the group hopes to revise and make the document available in early Summer 2022. The intent of the Model License Agreement is to present a template of key issues involved in negotiating a license to acquire or use digital content specifically as it relates to federated authentication.

The WAYF Entry Disambiguation Working Group published a white paper describing when and how users might be confused by the IdP Discovery WAYF service, a first step toward determining short, medium and long-term guidance on the issues of preventing visual name collisions in WAYF.

Further work on internationalization continues to support users in their language of choice. 

The Core division of the American Library Association has created a new Federated Authentication Committee to help focus the efforts of the library community in evaluating federated authentication as an access mechanism for library resources, and maintains a liaison relationship with SeamlessAccess. 

The Learning Center section of the SeamlessAccess website continues to be updated with additional material at

Todd Carpenter and Jason Griffey spoke about the SeamlessAccess efforts on the January open teleconference


SERU (Shared E-Resource Understanding) Standing Committee

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 and NISO continues to add more libraries and publishers to the SERU Registry upon request. 

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 (BJU International), 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, who meet bi-monthly, are responsible for encouraging publisher endorsement and planning outreach, education and training activities. Currently the Standing Committee is turning its attention to a future revision, reviewing new use scenarios and inspecting Transfer elements and procedures that may need to be updated. 

Heather Staines and Linda Wobbe discussed the initiative at NISO Plus, and Gaëlle Béquet and Martha Lovvoll presented on the March open teleconference (webinar)

Z39.7 Data Dictionary Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Martha Kyrillidou (QualityMetrics), Joe Zucca (University of Pennsylvania)
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 which are then reviewed by the Standing Committee during its 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.

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. 

NISO expects to convene the working group during Q2.  For more information contact Nettie Lagace.

Several presentations on the future work by project sponsors Christine Stohn and Athena Hoeppner have been made already, including the Charleston Conference (with Julie Zhu), NISO Plus, and ER&L.