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Working Group Connection, April 2024: Projects via Information Discovery & Interchange Topic Committee

Working Group Connection, April 2024: Projects via Information Discovery & Interchange Topic Committee

April 2024

Co-chairs of the IDI topic committee are: Robert Boissy (Springer Nature) and Jan Waterhouse (Kansas State University).

Access & License Indicators Revision

Working Group Web Page
Publication: NISO RP-22-2021, Access & License Indicators (2021 Revision)

The Access License and Indicators (ALI) Recommended Practice was first published by NISO in 2015 with the goal to standardize and communicate bibliographic metadata that describe the access rights status of journal articles and their license details.  The specification gained adoption and use via the ANSI/NISO JATS vocabulary and the Crossref metadata schema.

This 2021 revision extended the RP to add metadata and indicators that would allow metadata users, such as content platforms, to filter or target subsets of license information. This filtering or sub-setting would enable applications to determine whether their users can share a specific journal article version – or elements thereof – under specific contexts (e.g., sharing in researcher collaboration groups or on public profiles). 

Communication of Retractions, Removals, and Expressions of Concern (CREC)

Chair: Caitlin Bakker (University of Regina)
Working Group web page
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

Retracted research is published work that is withdrawn, removed, or otherwise invalidated from the scientific and scholarly record. Although relatively rare, retracted research—including unsupported or fabricated data, fundamental errors, and unreproducible results—can be inadvertently propagated within the digital scholarly record through citations. The CREC Recommended Practice is intended to help address this problem, by clearly identifying parties involved in the retraction process, along with their responsibilities, actions, notifications, and the metadata necessary to communicate retracted research. CREC is an output of both the recent Sloan Foundation-funded project, Reducing the Inadvertent Spread of Retracted Science (RISRS) and the 2021 NISO Plus conference, where this topic was one of three highlighted by attendees as of highest importance. CREC will be consistent with existing guidelines, such as those published by the Council on Publishing Ethics (COPE) and the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) and the Council of Science Editors (CSE). 

On October 10, 2023, NISO held a public webinar featuring CREC Working Group co-chairs Caitlin Bakker and Rachael Lammey, along with CREC Working Group member and Sloan Foundation grant recipient Dr. Jodi Schneider, to discuss the draft Recommended Practice and the upcoming public comment period. The draft of the CREC Recommended Practice was released for public comment from October 18 to December 2, 2023 and dozens of comments were submitted by community members. Following the close of the comment period, the group held an in-person meeting in London on December 5th, 2023, to review the comments received. This meeting coincided with STM Research Integrity Day, where Dr. Jodi Schneider and NISO Executive Director Todd Carpenter participated on a panel entitled "New Approaches Towards Retractions."  The Working Group is working to finalize the draft Recommended Practice and send responses to commenters.  After Working Group approval, the Recommended Practice will be presented to the Information Discovery & Interchange Topic Committee for its approval before NISO publication. We anticipate the Recommended Practice publication in the next few months. 

Caitlin Bakker, Dr. Jodi Schneider, and Keondra Bailey presented on the CREC work at the Charleston Conference in November 2023. Keondra Bailey discussed the project at NISO Plus 2024 in Baltimore in February.  In early May, Tilla Edmunds, Annette Flanagin, and Dr. Jodi Schneider will present a session at the Council of Science Editors conference. Todd Carpenter and Dr. Jodi Schneider will present at the Society for Scholarly Publishing Annual Meeting in late May.  A presentation at the American Library Association Annual Conference in San Diego in late June is also planned. 

Interoperable System of Controlled Digital Lending (IS-CDL)

Co-chairs: Jennie Rose Halperin (Library Futures), Allen Jones (The New School)
Working Group Web Page linking to Draft Recommended Practice for Public Comment
Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded NISO a grant of $125,000 in 2021 to support the development of a consensus framework for implementing controlled digital lending (CDL) of book content by libraries.  Libraries exist to serve their communities, to distribute information and knowledge of all kinds to users of many types, abilities, and resources; circulation of content in all formats is a core feature of what libraries exist to do, and they have been doing so legally for centuries. CDL is an emerging “lend like print” approach, which enables libraries to loan digital versions of their print books while using technical controls to ensure a consistent “owned-to-loaned” ratio. This allows a library to lend the exact number of copies of a specific title it owns—-regardless of format—-with controls to prevent users from redistributing or copying the digitized version. 

The Working Group began its work in January 2022. It included subgroups discussing circulation, interlibrary loan, digital objects, and sharing digital assets.  These examined and analyzed existing models that describe the similarities and differences between CDL and traditional circulation and ILL and identified gaps in the understanding of CDL applications.  The Recommended Practice, available for public comment until April 21, describes systems interoperability requirements, identifies changes needed to existing library protocols and standards, and recommends model processes for library staff.

Following the public comment period, the Working Group will reconvene to address the comments and finalize and approve the draft Recommended Practice which will then be made available to the NISO Information Discovery & Interchange Topic Committee for its approval before NISO publication.

Allen Jones and Nettie Lagace talked about the work at the Charleston Conference in November and at ER&L in March. Nettie Lagace discussed the project at NISO Plus 2024 in Baltimore in February, and Peter Brantley gave a lightning talk at the CNI Spring 2024 Membership Meeting in San Diego in March. A session at the ALA Annual Conference in San Diego in June is also planned 

Knowledge Bases And Related Tools (KBART) Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Robert Heaton (EBSCO), Noah Levin (Springer Publishing)
Contact KBART Chairs for endorsement approval
KBART Web Pages
Publication: Knowledge Bases and Related Tools (KBART) Recommended Practice (NISO RP-9-2014)

KBART is a NISO Recommended Practice that facilitates the transfer of holdings metadata from content providers to knowledge base suppliers and libraries. Knowledge bases are widely used to support library link resolvers and electronic resource management systems. The first iteration of the KBART Recommended Practice, which focused on journal holdings, was published in 2010; a 2014 "Phase II" revision extended support to metadata for e-books, conference proceedings, consortial subscriptions and some open access publications. Starting in early 2020 the KBART Standing Committee has been hard at work on research and actions around elements of its Phase III work with subgroups addressing areas of work such as clarifying the recommendations, revamping the mission statement, determining new types of material to support (such as video) and thus any required new fields, and creating a new file guide.  The endorsement process continues as approved providers are added to the KBART Registry, although a new validator application under development may help speed this process further. 

From the Working Group: "One thing we keep in mind as we revise KBART, and which we like to remind others, is that KBART is not intended to provide comprehensive descriptive metadata for content, a task more suited to MARC, for example. KBART aims to provide the metadata needed to identify the correct copy of an e-resource for linking purposes. At its core, KBART communicates holdings metadata."

The Endorsements subgroup begun work in October as the Standing Committee gets closer to the finish line on Phase III. On April 15, co-chairs Robert Heaton and Noah Levin, with KBART member Ben Johnson participated in the April 2024 Open Teleconference to discuss updates to the group’s current progress on Phase III.

Andrew Senior, Noah Levin (co-chair), Christine Stohn, Bobbi Patham gave a presentation at the 2023 virtual Charleston Conference. Co-chair Noah Levin gave an update on KBART’s progress at during the Working Group Update at NISO Plus in February 2024.  And KBART was featured on the April Open Teleconference, with Noah Levin, Robert Heaton, and Ben Johnson participating as speakers. 

Enhancing KBART for Automated Exchange of Title Lists and Library Holdings

Co-chairs: Stephanie Doellinger, Oliver Pesch (EBSCO Information Services)
Publication: KBART Automation Recommended Practice (NISO RP-26-2019)
KBART Automation Working Group Web Page 

The KBART Automation Working Group’s output, the KBART Automation Recommended Practice (NISO RP-26-2019) was published in June 2019. This work extends the KBART Phase 2 Recommended Practice to provide technical instructions to facilitate the automatic transfer and retrieval of holdings data between content providers and institutional knowledge bases with the goal of automatically and regularly updating institutional activations and settings via an API. Included in the Recommended Practice are descriptions of data elements and file formats; options a content provider must provide to enable customers to access its holdings reports; expected API support that enables automated retrieval of reports; suggested license language and a discussion of data confidentiality; and description of additional elements and attribute values that can be included in the reports.

It is likely that there will be more resources to address further KBART Automation work once the KBART Standing Committee's efforts on KBART Phase III wrap up. 

NCIP (NISO Circulation Interchange Protocol) Standing Committee

NCIP Web Pages
NCIP Standing Committee
Publication: ANSI/NISO Z39.83-1-2012 (version 2.02), NISO Circulation Interchange - Part 1: Protocol (NCIP)
Publication: ANSI/NISO Z39.83-2-2012 (version 2.02), NISO Circulation Interchange Protocol (NCIP) Part 2: Implementation Profile 1 

The latest version of NCIP, 2.02, was published in 2012. The Standing Committee is responsible for reviewing status of implementations and discussing other general business, such as additions to the NCIP website, implementor questions, and potential updates to the protocol. Input from the public is welcome.  NISO expects to begin a standards review and potential reaffirmation process for NCIP later this year. 

Open Discovery Initiative Standing Committee

Co-chairs: Rachel Kessler (ProQuest), Ken Varnum (University of Michigan)
ODI Web Pages
Publication: ODI Recommended Practice (NISO RP-19-2020)

The newest version of the Open Discovery Initiative Recommended Practice was approved by NISO and published in June 2020. The updated ODI Recommended Practice provides a more detailed treatment of Abstracting and Indexing (A&I) content products, and supports better metadata sharing (including information about open access material) and record display, as well as improved tracking of usage statistics and authentication mechanisms. It also includes advice on systems, training, and communication for libraries that configure and upgrade their discovery systems. ODI's intent is to unify the community by encouraging dialogue among stakeholders and by increasing order within the industry by standardizing practices.

The ODI Standing Committee is continuing its focus on education and promotion of ODI adoption, particularly around ensuring awareness of new conformance statements to be prepared by all stakeholders (content providers, discovery providers, and libraries). 

The group has published a newly updated FAQ for library conformance. The Spring 2024 Conformance Statement for Libraries Workshop took place on April 15th, with speakers Teresa Hazen, Geoff Morse, and Ken Varnum.

Julie Zhu’s article “Reflecting on a Decade with the Open Discovery Initiative: Insights from IEEE” was published on the Scholarly Kitchen on October 16th, 2023.

Bobbi Patham presented at the Working Group Update 2 session at NISO Plus in February.

ResourceSync Working Group

ResourceSync Web Page
Publication: ANSI/NISO Z39.99-2017, ResourceSync Framework Specification 

ResourceSync, a specification which describes a synchronization framework for the web consisting of various capabilities that allow third party systems to remain synchronized with a server's evolving resources, was first published in 2014 and updated more recently in 2017 as ANSI/NISO Z39.99-2017. The problem that ResourceSync was designed to solve spans the areas of search, discovery, deposit, metadata harvesting, and transfer; there is a need to keep collections of resources in sync so that additions, updates, and deletions of one are reflected in the other. The ResourceSync standard was written in such a way that individual capabilities could be combined to meet local requirements. A server may also describe synchronization capabilities that it supports and means through which third party systems may discover this support. The core functionality of the specification is intended to represent a functional replacement of OAI-PMH. (Other features, such as change notificationframework notification, and archive capabilities are published through separate documents, not currently part of the material part of NISO/ANSI standardization.)

ResourceSync is due for its periodic review; NISO will pull together this formal activity later this year. 

A quick overview of ResourceSync is available at

New Project: Open ILS/LSP Ecosystem Interconnectivity Encompassing Technical Needs, Definitions of Terms and Community Transparency; Open ILS Initiative (OII)

Work Item Approved by NISO Voting Members

Libraries each have unique needs to uphold and sustain their mission. As a result, the potential combinations of software/systems evident across the library community are virtually unlimited. However, the ability to implement preferred approaches for each library, involving integrating disparate systems and tools, can be challenging when dealing with closed infrastructures, technical limitations, lack of standardization, system restrictions, unclarity about the scope of interoperability, and the potential confusion caused by lack of clarity/definition of related terms. The ILS (Integrated Library System) or LSP (Library Services Platform) tends to be the center of these environments where interoperability and bi-directional integrations are paramount, hence the focus of this endeavor.

This proposal is to support a working group that will develop a Recommended Practice to create visibility, clarity, and conformance of the areas that will optimize open interoperability around the ILS/LSP and support the various parties involved. The initial working group for the Open ILS Initiative Recommended Practice would analyze the existing landscape, including conducting community surveys, among other types of information gathering.

NISO expects to convene the working group later this year.  For more information contact Nettie Lagace.