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Launch of the UC Libraries Digital Collection Project

By Ginny Steel, University Librarian, UCSC & Council of University Librarians (CoUL) Chair

In late 2011, the Council of University Librarians (CoUL) and the Systemwide Operations and Planning Advisory Group (SOPAG) asked the Next Generation Technical Services Management Team to charge a “Power of Three” team (NGTS POT1) with a set of priority actions, including:

  1. Propose a model for a systemwide digital management system (DAMS) that meets the needs of those UC campus libraries that do not yet have one.
  2. Develop requirements for a discovery and display system that can serve as the front-end user interface for an envisioned UC Libraries Digital Collection.
  3. Develop an aggregation strategy that ensures UC campus libraries’ digital assets will be available for discovery and display as part of the future UC Libraries Digital Collection.

Though significant in its scope, the charge of NGTS POT1 was in fact the next step in a series of UC Libraries systemwide task forces and initiatives, all undertaken with the goal of developing a framework to manage and provide access to digital collections. The earlier Digital Library Services Task Force (DLSTF) Part 1 (2010) and Part 2 (2011) proposed a set of recommendations centered on the creation of a “UC Libraries Digital Collection” and the technical, organizational, and service infrastructure to support it. Concurrently, the Next Generation Technical Services (NGTS) Part 1 (2010) and NGTS Part 2 (2011) initiatives focused on how to shift technical services operations to better support digital collections. Taken together, the work of the DLSTF1, DLSTF2, NGTS1, and NGTS2 initiatives provided the foundation for the work of NGTS POT1, and for the creation of a UC Libraries Digital Collection.

Under the oversight of the NGTS Management Team, throughout 2012 and into early 2013 the NGTS POT1 team delivered a series of assessment studies, reports, and recommendations relative to a systemwide DAMS, including a discovery and display system. In March 2013, CoUL met and formally approved moving forward with implementation of a systemwide DAMS for those campuses that do not yet have one, and with development of a UC Libraries Digital Collection discovery and display service, as proposed by NGTS POT1.

The UC Libraries Digital Collection Project: Next Steps

With the CoUL approval of the development of a UC Libraries Digital Collection systemwide service, including its endorsement of a technical model as proposed by NGTS POT1, the project will now be transitioned from its current place within the NGTS structure and into the established UC Libraries systemwide service structure. CoUL has requested that the California Digital Library assume immediate responsibility for creating a UC Libraries Digital Collections implementation project team, and soon after, a centralized service operations team. Information about the implementation project will be made available publicly at:

The conclusion of the NGTS POT1 work and the launch of the UC Libraries Digital Collection Implementation Project mark a significant milestone for the Next Generation Technical Services initiative. CoUL acknowledges and applauds the work of the NGTS Management Team [i], NGTS POT1 [ii], and the many dedicated individuals who served on the NGTS POT1 Lightning Teams [iii]. Their important contributions have brought the UC Libraries closer to its vision of a UC Libraries Digital Collection, supported by a robust systemwide technical, organizational, and service infrastructure.  Thank you to all who have participated!


[i] NGTS Management Team members include: Martha Hruska (UCSD), convener; Elizabeth Cowell (UCSC), Vicki Graham (UCI), Emily Lin (UCM), Susan Parker (UCLA), and Joan Starr (CDL).
[ii] NGTS POT1 members include: Felicia Poe (CDL), convener; Declan Fleming (UCSD), Todd Grappone (UCLA), Eric Milenkiewicz (UCR), Colby Riggs (UCI), Lisa Schiff (CDL), and Lisa Spagnolo (UCD).
[iii] A complete list of NGTS POT1 Lighting Team members is available at: