Spring 1998


The Dean's Corner

Statewide Common Library Platform for Missouri Academic Libraries

Governor Mel Carnahan recommended $10.2 million in the FY99 Missouri state budget to fund the development of a computer based Statewide Common Library Platform (CLP) for all Missouri academic librarians. The Governor's recommendation resulted from the hard work of many academic libraries, support by the Coordinating Board of Higher Education (especially Mr. Eldon Wallace, Associate Commissioner) and presidents of Missouri's public colleges and universities, including our own President Elliott. During FY97, it was my privilege to serve as chair of the Missouri Academic Library Administrators who championed this cause. It is heartening to see the seeds we have planted beginning to bear fruit.

The CLP will not only bring technological advances which provide greater and easier access to library resources, it will also change the way academic libraries cooperate with each other by fostering more partnerships through a new consortium. Each library belonging to the consortium will not only serve its immediate clientele but also the clientele from all institutions belonging to the consortium.

The CLP will provide a common and familiar computer interface for all Missouri academic library clients. No longer will faculty and students have to learn different computer commands to search the holdings of different academic libraries. Faculty and students across the state can borrow materials located in any of the member's libraries just like they borrow from their own campus library. Along with the CLP, plans are also underway to develop a transportation system to move library materials between and among member libraries. Together these two programs will provide expanded and expedient access to library information resources to all Missourians. I will keep you informed on further developments of this exciting project.


Paladugu V. Rao