The INLN Web Coordination Group
In 2013, INLN members continue to reap concrete benefits from their participation in the International Nuclear Library Network. Seven new nuclear libraries/institutions joined the INLN, bringing the number of participating libraries to 49 and the number of member countries to 31. In today’s environment of user expectations for faster electronic delivery services, ever-increasing digital resources and rapidly changing technology, the Network has not lost its momentum. To function as effectively as possible and to embrace these challenges and opportunities, while addressing shrinking resources, the Network introduced the INLN Web Coordination Group, which caters to strategic decisions and directions.
In order to increase coordination and collaboration among Network libraries in providing services to users, and ensure access to information for the global nuclear community while making efficient use of library expenditures, the Network established an INLN Web Coordination Group – its governance team – which regularly convenes online. The Group aims to direct the Network’s evolution towards a distributed and coordinated nuclear community, and secure its future sustainability. Institutions from Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, plus the IAEA Library, constitute the Group which works towards leveraging technology and information flows to deliver point-of-need access to library services for nuclear researchers. Simultaneously, the Group enables INLN internal and – where applicable – external users to access information independently by creating or enhancing tools and resources, while striving for quality and timeliness of services across all participating libraries. The newly established Group will enable the global nuclear information and knowledge management community – and particularly the IAEA Library – to leverage the expertise and resources of the geographically diverse libraries/institutions to improve access to diverse collections. It will also ensure that core information services of reference/research, interlibrary loan (ILL), document delivery, guidance on information management, and access to electronic library services are available at all Network libraries – of course, always in compliance with the terms and conditions of licence agreements. At the same time, this collaborative Network enables individual libraries to streamline operations and reduce redundancies; each participating library functions as both a national/local facility meeting the nuclear information needs of local customers, as well as a Network node providing services to other libraries – i.e. worldwide access to its collections, plus knowledgeable reference and research services to IAEA staff and researchers from all over the world.
The IAEA Library is entrusted with the task of increasing electronic access to IAEA publications through digitization – with the technical help of the International Nuclear Information System. All members of the Group work to increase awareness of the Network libraries' offerings through diverse outreach efforts; the IAEA Library has included Network activities in its communications and outreach and has expanded its training programme to offer training opportunities to Network participants. In 2014, a Practical Arrangement is to be drafted and ratified by all INLN members, while the first ever INLN directory will be created in the same year – it will include a paragraph introducing each INLN member’s parent organisation, a description of the Library/Knowledge/Information Centre resources, plus full contact details, paving the road for the first inventory of the Network.
Over the next three years, the International Nuclear Library Network will work to implement the goals and actions laid out by the Web Coordination Group. There are many external factors – resource allocation, ongoing day-to-day operations of Network libraries, evolving parent institutions' priorities, and new technological requirements – that may affect the Network’s ability to implement the actions decided. The Network’s coordination Group has been created to ensure that the implementation of a decision is managed closely and that the set schedule is monitored and updated to ensure the activities are implemented effectively. It rests on the active participation of the Group members to make this happen.