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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: Interlending & Document Supply, Volume 40, Issue 4
This issue concludes our first year as editors of Interlending & Document Supply. The two of us have gained a new found respect for editors everywhere as we’ve started up the steep hill of our learning curve. The demands of managing such an illustrious international journal as ILDS, especially following a decade of Mike McGrath’s exemplary stewardship, proved much greater than we had anticipated. Compounding matters, our first two issues were each about 50 percent larger than normal in an effort to publish the nearly complete proceedings of IFLA’s 2011 Interlending & Document Supply Conference in Chicago. The decision to publish two consecutive oversized issues while still familiarizing ourselves with the publisher’s policies, practices, manuscript submission system, and style guide must rank as one of our most naïve undertakings ever. And yet, we end our first year with a sense of genuine gratitude for having been entrusted with the honor of leading this journal, for the rewards of working with such an impressive roster of authors, and for the vast new stores of knowledge we’ve gained from working with dozens of talented colleagues around the globe. The resource sharing community is quite simply a terrific community and we are proud to be a part of it.
This issue is considerably smaller by design, an attempt to balance the year’s work after starting off with two oversized issues. The papers in this issue cover topics that represent ongoing challenges for our profession. Mike McGrath’s article on electronic journals is an important one, full of detailed information on how RLUK successfully rolled back the excessive costs of some of their biggest Big Deals. The move from purchased content to licensed electronic content allows libraries to offer our users services and resources that once were the stuff of dreams, and yet they present other troubling issues that must be dealt with. Mike’s article, particularly the details in his table, provides hard data to inform the discussion. The IITA article reminds us that even modest investments in resource sharing can advance research. In this case, a shared local system combined with a listserv provides agricultural libraries with capabilities that some institutions take for granted, but that deliver much-needed advances for local library users. The article on the readiness of Iranian libraries for document supply is a recurrent theme – the lack of comfort with technology is a significant barrier to advancing service.
Finally, we are proud to include Mike McGrath’s indispensible literature review – a “must read” for any resource sharing professional who wishes to stay current with the latest trends, issues, and developments in our corner of the library world.
Mary Hollerich, Collette Mak