OCLC partners with the Big Ten Academic Alliance

NISO Member News

Dublin, OH. | March 27, 2023

OCLC is partnering with the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA) to advance development of OCLC Resource Sharing for Groups, a new solution that reimagines resource sharing with a focus on library groups and consortia.

OCLC and the BTAA are working together to support the evolution of BTAA's UBorrow service, which offers access to more than 90 million books from the collections of 15 university libraries and the Center for Research Libraries, as part of OCLC's Resource Sharing for Groups. OCLC's vision for this solution is consistent with the BTAA's goals for the BIG Collection resource sharing, which focuses on the unique needs of libraries that want to share in new ways to meet the changing needs of the user community.

OCLC Resource Sharing for Groups is a modern consortial borrowing solution that expedites delivery of digital and print items to library users. Participating libraries have all the tools needed to easily lend and borrow resources from group members. If a request can't be filled within the group, it seamlessly scales out to regional partners and to OCLC's global interlibrary loan (ILL) network, without any staff intervention. The solution also builds on smart fulfillment functionality for fast, predictable delivery based on local policies, group profiles, available resources, library relationships, and user needs—with first-supplier fill rates at 90-95 percent.

OCLC and the BTAA have a long history of working together on research projects, such as the 2019 report Operationalizing the BIG Collective Collection: A Case Study of Consolidation vs Autonomy, and resource sharing systems such as UBorrow, WorldShare ILL, and ILLiad.

"We are delighted to work with the BTAA as a development partner for OCLC Resource Sharing for Groups," said Mary Sauer-Games, OCLC Vice President, Global Product Management. "The BTAA comprises large academic institutions in different states and regions that work with a variety of groups and consortia. We're excited to partner in the development of a solution that will meet both the objectives of the BTAA's ambitious BIG Collection initiative, and the evolving needs of the broader library community."

The BTAA's Big Collection effort is driven by library directors' commitment to move the 15 independent collections of the Big Ten libraries into one collection, shared, and fully networked.

"The BTAA libraries do not work alone; we're not an island," said Maurice York, BTAA Director of Library Initiatives. "We're deeply integrated into state networks, regional networks, and a very rich, connected world. This partnership with OCLC will benefit the BTAA libraries as we work toward achieving the Big Collection. We will also create expanding ripple effects with this work that we hope will define a new way of thinking about how libraries collaborate and share."

OCLC Resource Sharing for Groups provides streamlined consortial resource sharing that accelerates delivery across group members, providing a seamless experience for library users and simplified workflows for library staff—for digital as well as print items.

The solution also offers group members more choice and flexibility since it's provider-neutral and integrates with any standards-based discovery services and library management systems.

"OCLC Resource Sharing for Groups is an integrated solution that builds on data intelligence, smart fulfilment functionality, and a massive interlibrary loan network," said Sauer-Games. "It helps libraries connect and share all types of resources and ensures those resources are delivered to library users quickly and efficiently."

OCLC Resource Sharing for Groups is available now.