The Schwerdtfeger Library News - August 2005

By Jean Phillips, Librarian


State of Campus Library Acquisitions Budgets

In its 2004-2005 Annual Report, the University Library Committee (ULC) summarizes the state of acquisitions budgets for the UW Libraries:

The ULC continues to be concerned about the lack of state support for the UW Library’s
acquisitions budget. The Regents’ proposed increase of $7 million for UW System library
acquisitions and electronic resources was not included in the 2005-2007 biennium. The
UW-Madison now ranks in the bottom quartile of the CIC/Big Ten universities in
expenditures for library collections. Decline in the quality of library collections will adversely
affect UW-Madison’s ability to compete for the best students and faculty.
The UW-Madison campus administration provided an additional $400,000 for acquisitions in
2004-2005. The ULC recognizes the efforts of the campus administration to protect the
library budget from cuts and provide additional funding to the extent that the current budget
climate permits.

To provide a basis for comparison, the graph below shows total expenditures for the Big Ten universities over a 30-year period. All data were taken from the Association for Research Libraries Statistics which tracks data for 112 research libraries in North America. The University of Wisconsin-Madison, along with the other Big Ten universities, are all members.



In 1974 and again in 1984, the University of Wisconsin-Madison ranked in the first quartile for total materials expenditures. In 1994, the UW dropped to the second quartile and in 2004, it has fallen to the bottom quartile. In the last 20 years we've moved from small differences in expenditures to a situation where Michigan spends almost twice what the UW does. Materials expenditures include journal subscriptions (both print and electronic), database licenses, books, etc. Materials expenditures and other parameters have long been used as benchmarks of library and institutional health. In general, total full-time student enrollment across the institutions has remained fairly constant.

In practical terms, what does this mean? It means erosion of core collections. It means that increasingly we will need to rely on other institutions to fill our information needs. It is not uncommon for us to use the Canadian research collections to fill information requests that cannot be filled here. There is a relationship between quality of library collections and the University's ability to attract high-calibre researchers, faculty and students.

Read the full 2004-2005 Annual Report for more information on this and other issues related to campus libraries.


SPIE Proceedings Cancelled

Most of the proposed serial cancellations for campus libraries for 2005-2006 have been released and among them is the Wendt Engineering Library's intent to cancel the following:

Title: Proceedings of the SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering
Location: Wendt
Latest annual print subscription price: $38,310

We have no electronic access to this series and currently there are no funds to license it. Electronic access, like the print, is in excess of $30,000. We do use the SPIE proceedings fairly regularly, so this cancellation will affect us. We'll make every effort to get papers to you quickly when we need to get them from other sources.

There are no other cancellations posted as yet that would directly affect the atmospheric sciences.

UW-Friends Book Sale

The largest used book sale in Wisconsin starts Wednesday, 12 October and runs through Saturday, 15 October in the Memorial Library. The semiannual sale, organized by the Friends of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Libraries, offers more than 15,000 books on almost every subject.

The fall sales are held in conjunction with the Wisconsin Book Festival, October 14-16, in Madison.


New Reports from the National Science Foundation

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