The Consortium Luxembourg manages the largest digital library in Luxembourg. It is a key player in developing the knowledge society, serving academia, research and the general public through a national access policy. The current offer (August 2017) consists of 55.000 electronic journal titles, 312.000 scientific eBooks and 350 specialised databases and reference platforms in English, French and German which can all be accessed at www.a-z.lu. The Consortium is also managing ebooks.lu, a project offering patrons of public libraries access to about 80.000 fiction and non-fiction ebooks in French, German and English.
Its origin is the digital library launched in 2002 by the National Library of Luxembourg. (Luckily, the archive.org service has a copy of the original as it appeared in 2002.) This project evolved into the current “Consortium Luxembourg pour l’acquisition et la gestion de publications électroniques”, a department of the National Library which centralises administration, access and licence negotiation. The National Library’s IT services also manage its hard- and software in cooperation with the Luxembourg State computing center (CTIE).
The first dedicated digital library portal was launched in 2005 at the address findit.lu, based on MetaLib by Exlibris. This first portal is not under active development any longer. Since 2014, the new delivery platform for all consortial content is at a-z.lu, the National Library’s search engine based on the ExLibris Primo discovery solution. Integrated services include a massive cloud-based index of several 100 million references, a fully responsive interface as well as the integration with more than 80 catalogues of the bibnet.lu libraries.
Membership in the Consortium has grown constantly over the years. In 2006 the University of Luxembourg joined, followed in 2009 by the public research centers Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (formerly CRP Henri Tudor and CRP Gabriel Lippmann) and Luxembourg Institute of Health (formerly CRP Santé). In 2014, the Consortium members decided on a multi-annual project to reassess its infrastructure, diversify services and further improve statistics and tools to ensure that digital library services in Luxembourg remain cost-effective and future-proof. In 2016, a key milestone of the reorganisation was successfully completed as the entire backoffice was streamlined and implemented in the Consortiamanager.com software. This cloud-based software is now used to manage the complete lifecycle of subscriptions, combining licence management, negotiation support, ordering, statistics and invoicing. For optimal transparency, dashboards for library administrators in our member organisations are now available. A result of the reorganisation is the addition of new members in 2017 under the new service model, such as the Max-Planck Institute Luxembourg and a new digital gouvernement library (bibgouv.findit.lu) launched in March 2017.
In 2017, the Consortium Luxembourg team at the National Library will focus on the continued modularisation of the user-facing access and fulfilment infrastructure, as implemented with the new bibgouv.findit.lu digital library. Additionally a pilot project has been started with ConsortiaManager to respond to one immediate challenge posed by the Open Access transition: Additional data on Open Access publications of our members must be collected, quality controlled and reconciled with existing subscriptions to provide negotiation support for offsetting “Article processing costs” with publishers. The National Library is cooperating closely with the main Luxembourg research funder FNR and the 3LIU group of research organisations.
The current team of Consortium Luxembourg is Juliane Schulze, administration and licensing; Teresa Fernandez, metadata and statistics; and Patrick Peiffer, head of consortium. Our offices are in the Kirchberg Annex of the National Library at 31, blvd Adenauer; L-1115 Luxembourg.
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