Library users conduct an increasing number of information searches online without the help of a librarian. The library’s discovery and access systems play an important role in helping users sift through and access the large amount of electronically published content.
When these systems have to rely on poor-quality data, users face a major barrier to discovery and access. When discovery and access fail, users get frustrated and librarians may choose not to renew subscriptions to content or to knowledge base and discovery services. A break in one part of the content supply chain will affect all links in the chain. However, by implementing some basic improvements, libraries, service providers and data suppliers (including, but not limited to, publishers) can remove this barrier and improve users’ experiences.
The authors of this white paper, the E-Data Quality Working Group, are representatives of libraries, data suppliers and service providers. We recognize that all of us, as participants in the content supply chain, have a shared interest in improving content discovery and access for library users through better quality bibliographic metadata and holdings data. We also recognize that we have a shared responsibility to improve the quality of the data exchanged and to implement more effective data exchange workflows.
The content supply chain faces three core problems with the current state of data quality. All of these issues can prevent users from getting to the resources they need.