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In 2014 Wayne State University closed its Science & Engineering Library (SEL) converting the building into a mediated storage collection. In 2017 the University received funding from the State of Michigan to convert the SEL into lab and classroom space intended to support our various STEM programs. This project would have a significant impact on our print journal collection, system wide, due to the 600,000 volumes housed in SEL and the limited available space to absorb them in other parts of the library system. This challenge required a radical downsizing of this collection in the most responsible way possible while minimizing the deleterious impact on faculty and student research.

Our starting point was using historical data extracted from our Atlas© Illiad database covering 2010-15, in addition to other data sources. Using historical document delivery and lending data we were able to lay the groundwork for making informed decisions about retention candidates. In order to advance the project we partnered with OCLC’s Sustainable Collection Services (SCS) to provide us with access to our Illiad data, title level holdings in Worldcat to compare our titles to, and the technical expertise needed to clean-up and make sense of the data.

As we began work on the project the criteria we considered included: usage, special collection status, completeness of the run held, alternative sources of access, and content issues. From a Collection Development perspective, the main focus of this project has been assuring that the faculty and students will continue to have access to the content of weeded journals and would experience minimum delay between the point of identification and having it in-hand.

The goal of this presentation is to demonstrate one of many possible uses of the data currently sitting in various ILL databases that can be used to make data-driven collection management decisions.


Collection Development and Management | Library and Information Science