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Wednesday, November 8 • 2:30pm - 3:10pm
From Descriptive Analysis to Prescriptive Analytics: Visualization and Validation in Shared Print

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The Eastern Academic Scholars’ Trust (EAST) is the largest regional shared print program with 6 million monograph titles already committed for long-term retention. Over the last year, EAST has expanded its goal of protecting the scholarly record by focusing on retention of back files of serials and journals titles.

This session will focus on the important role that data analysis and analytics have played in EAST’s retention decisions. As part of the initial monograph retention program, EAST undertook a large-scale sample validation program and amassed an extensive data set. Attendees will learn the details of this study and be introduced to the statistical analysis that determined correlation between various factors and the likelihood that specific items are more likely to be missing or in poor condition.

On the serials and journals side, we will explore how EAST worked with the Center for Research Libraries (CRL) and their recently introduced collection comparison service to narrow down retention commitments from the 112,000 unique titles held. We will show examples of the data we found useful as well as visual representations of the data, which we experimented with using Tableau.

Carried out without grant funding, the serials and journals analysis has required reaching consensus on a retention policy from a diverse range of libraries across the northeast. The group considered whether EAST should focus on protecting rare titles or make commitments to more widely held titles, thereby providing libraries with much needed withdrawal opportunities.

For both monograph and serials retention, EAST has relied on extensive analysis of the collective collection. We have worked with statistical and visualization tools to understand the collection from a descriptive perspective. Using both prescriptive and prospective analytics, EAST has furthered the mission of protecting the print scholarly record for research, scholarship and teaching.


Mei Mendez

Program Officer, Boston Library Consortium
avatar for Susan Stearns

Susan Stearns

Executive Director, Boston Library Consortium & Eastern Academic Scholars' Trust
Susan Stearns is the Executive Director of the Boston Library Consortium (BLC) and Project Director for the Eastern Academic Scholars’ Trust (EAST) shared print initiative. She coordinates the activities of the EAST Project Team, works closely with the Executive Committee and is... Read More →

Wednesday November 8, 2017 2:30pm - 3:10pm EST
Cypress South, Courtyard Marriott Hotel 125 Calhoun Street, Charleston, SC 29401