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PALCI and PALNI Receive IMLS Grant to Develop the Hyku Open Source Institutional Repository

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The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has awarded $172,172 to the Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc. (PALCI) in partnership with the Private Academic Library Network of Indiana (PALNI) for Scaling Up a Collaborative Consortial Institutional Repository as part of the National Leadership Grants for Libraries Program. IMLS received 138 preliminary proposals requesting more than $33 million in funding, and selected 36 applicants to receive awards during this grant cycle. With this award, the partners will develop and pilot an affordable, open-source, and collaborative institutional repository solution based on the Hyku software.  

An institutional repository (IR) provides the academic community a place to capture, preserve, and make accessible the important research, special collections, and other types of information they create. Libraries and campuses benefit from having the infrastructure and tools provided in an IR solution to manage assets and disseminate them to the larger public. However, many libraries do not have an institutional repository. PALNI has long examined the institutional repository environment, beginning with a needs analysis led by Brooke Cox of DePauw University. Findings showed 70% of the PALNI libraries did not have an IR solution due to cost, inefficiency, or overly-rigid solutions. PALNI Executive Director Kirsten Leonard notes, "Hyku development steered by PALNI's partnership with PALCI is our best opportunity to meet the needs of our institutions and allow us to collaborate to reduce costs."

This grant project will develop a model for ultra low-cost hosting, discovery, and access to digital material for member libraries. The consortial IR service developed in Hyku will allow individual libraries to customize and brand the IR as their own, while sharing the underlying infrastructure, hosting, and administration costs across institutions. The project partners will work to scale Hyku software to create the functionality and configuration options needed to create a centralized collaborative repository infrastructure with multiple, library-based portals. This will reduce administration costs for libraries, increasing the likelihood of adoption and long-term sustainability. Initial development efforts will focus on support for Open Educational Resources (OERs) and Electronic Theses & Dissertations (ETDs).

Jill Morris, Executive Director of PALCI is excited at the opportunity to increase the value of consortial membership to libraries. "This project pushes the traditional work of consortia to new areas and extends collaboration beyond our normal boundaries. PALCI's work on this project with PALNI furthers the missions of our member libraries by offering a highly scalable, easily adopted IR service, and, in turn, supports broader IMLS goals to build the capacity of libraries, increase public access to information, and support lifelong learning."

"As centers of learning and catalysts of community change, libraries and museums connect people with programs, services, collections, information, and new ideas in the arts, sciences, and humanities. They serve as vital spaces where people can connect with each other," said IMLS Director Dr. Kathryn K. Matthew. "IMLS is proud to support their work through our grant making as they inform and inspire all in their communities."

The project will build on the efforts of a community-based Hyku Task Force charged with leading and scoping the development effort. "The first phase of the project includes defining requirements, features, workflows, and metadata templates. We are grateful to our engaged community members and excited to have IMLS support in this endeavor," states Amanda Hurford, Scholarly Communications Director for PALNI. Updates for the project will be made available at the Hyku for Consortia website.


About the Institute of Museum and Library Services:

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s libraries and museums. We advance, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grantmaking, research, and policy development. Our vision is a nation where museums and libraries work together to transform the lives of individuals and communities. To learn more, visit the IMLS website and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About the Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc. (PALCI):

PALCI (legally named the Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc.) was formed in 1996 as a grassroots federation of 35 academic libraries in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Today, the PALCI membership consists of 70 academic and research libraries, private and public, in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia, and New York. PALCI's mission is to build access to our shared collections through collaboration among academic libraries in Pennsylvania and the neighboring states. PALCI Members serve over 800,000 students, faculty, and staff, through a variety of programs including the highly-regarded E-ZBorrow resource sharing service. PALCI also serves as the home for PA Digital, the Pennsylvania hub of the Digital Public Library of America, and the new Affordable Learning PA program, creating a community of practice for open textbooks and related educational resources. 

About the Private Academic Library Network of Indiana, Inc. (PALNI): 

PALNI is a non-profit organization supporting collaboration for library and information services to the libraries of its twenty-four supported institutions. Over time, the library deans and directors who sit on the PALNI board have adjusted the organization’s strategic direction as the internet and information services landscape have changed. PALNI has expanded beyond providing a resource management system to sharing expertise in many areas including strategic planning, reference, information fluency, outreach, data management and configuration, and has identified greater collaboration in acquisitions as a key goal. Visit PALNI online to learn more.

About the Hyku Task Force

The Cross-Consortial Hyku Task Force is a group of interested member library representatives from the PALCI and PALNI consortia who will meet together in order to inform and guide the development of the Collaborative Consortial IR (CC-IR) Hyku Pilot.

Hyku Project Leadership:

Jill Morris, PALCI Executive Director

Gretchen Gueguen, PALCI Digital Projects and Communications Manager

Kirsten Leonard, PALNI Executive Director

Amanda Hurford, PALNI Scholarly Communications Director

Current Members of the Hyku Project Team (CC-IR Task Force):

Allen Jones, The New School

Edward Mandity, Marian University

Janelle Wertzberger, Gettysburg College

Janice Gustaferro, Butler University

Jerry Nugent, University of Indianapolis  

Jennifer Duplaga, Hanover College

Jennifer Raye, Butler University

Keiko Suzuki, The New School

Linda Poston, Messiah College

R.C. Miessler, Gettysburg College

Robert Smith, Concordia University

Sarah Myers, Messiah College