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Library Systems Office
Mission & Activities, 1997

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The mission of the Library Systems Office is to support the computer-related library information needs of Columbia University students, faculty and staff, to manage centralized library automated systems, and to provide technological support to library staff in order to enhance and improve their services to users.

It also has a key role in envisioning Columbia's Digital Library and in ongoing planning for campus-wide access to electronic information resources. Increasingly this involves close collaboration with Academic Information Systems and other campus computing groups, as well as coordination with colleague research libraries and national information standards and planning organizations.

More specifically, we seek to accomplish the following:

  1. Develop, implement and support library-oriented automated systems designed to:

    The overall level of service provided may be seen in some of the following milestones:

  2. Manage the specification, purchase, installation and ongoing maintenance, repair, upgrade, and replacement of computer hardware and peripherals of all types, including those for:

  3. Maintain and develop the computer-related skills of library patrons and staff by:

  4. Participate in campus-wide planning for automated and network information services in conjuction with Academic Information Systems, Administrative Information Services, and departmental computer and network staff.

    Library Systems staff participate in more than two dozen Library, AcIS and campus-wide committes, representing specialized library needs and contributing valuable perspectives from the broader world of information management and retrieval. Recent inititives have included development and coordination of the University's web home page, and the development of guidelines for the overall design and maintenance of ColumbiaWeb.

  5. Participate in nationwide planning and standards development with technical associations, colleague institutions, and information providers in order to make progress toward the goal of achieving both a campuswide and national digital library, along with the tools effectively to use it.

    Library Systems staff contribute regularly and substantively to ongoing planning with other Ivy and research university libraries and professional and technical organizations to achieve this objective. Recent examples include: the RLG Digital Image Access Project, the effort to create an SGML implementation of USMARC, a project to allow direct user request of materials at Columbia and two other colleague institutions (CoPY), and the National Digital Library Program metadata / cataloging initiative.

    Systems staff frequently contribute to national planning through publications and presentations at professional meetings.

    In all of these activities, Library Systems draws on the skills of appropriate AcIS and AIS staff, as well as network and system resources available from those deparments, avoiding duplication of systems and services wherever possible.

Last revision: 02/27/99
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