The Council of Prairie and Pacific Libraries’ Shared Print Archive Network (SPAN) is a distributed shared print program. SPAN's main goals are to provide access to shared print archives, create opportunities for the reallocation of library space and preserve the print record for its members in a cost-effective way. Rather than thinking about the project in terms of preserving the “last copy,” SPAN emphasizes the role of the archived print as part of an optimal copy network that includes other print archiving initiatives.
22 of COPPUL's full members (see the list below) have agreed to work together to retain and manage the shared print archive. Selection of titles for inclusion in SPAN will be made using a risk management framework: materials will be categorized as low-, medium- or high-risk based on their availability electronically, their rarity and their relevance to the Western Canadian region.
The COPPUL Shared Print Archive Network Member Agreement outlines the governance of the initiative, as well as the contributions and responsibilities expected from each participating library.
For more information, contact the SPAN Coordinator, email@example.com
SPAN infographic for decision makers
SPAN infographic for library staff
In November 2015, SPAN embarked on a monograph project in conjunction with Sustainable Collection Services (SCS) of OCLC. The intent of the project is to assess usage, duplication, and dispersion of holdings across participating libraries, to the fullest extent the collective data can support. There is strong interest in identifying and preserving scarcely-held materials within the group. There is also interest in de-selecting some low-use, widely-held titles. COPPUL also seeks to design its project to dovetail with the Last Copy initiative currently under discussion, and organized by the Library and Archives of Canada. Depending on timing, scope, and other factors, it is hoped that COPPUL data generated by this project can be incorporated into any broader initiative that eventuates. Similarly, COPPUL and the University of Saskatchewan would like to make use (subject to modification and update) of the data generated during Saskatchewan’s individual project with SCS.
The project will focus first on shared retention scenarios, based on the data. Retention models will be defined by the group, and treatment of those titles decided collaboratively. Retention commitments will be allocated according to parameters decided by the group, creating a print book ‘safety net’ across the group. Once retention commitments have been identified, individual libraries will be able to act independently and according to local needs on other holdings.
Version 1.0 of the Memorandum of Understanding was approved on April 18, 2018. It applies to the original ten participating institutions. Version 2.0 of the Memorandum of Understanding is available to institutions that wish to join the program after April 18, 2018. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions about the MOU.
As participating libraries implement their retention commitments, it is inevitable that they will discover items that are missing from their collections. We have developed a mechanism for libraries to report missing items and for other participants to retain them if they are able.
COPPUL staff will send out periodic reminders to consult the want list.
Participating libraries that retained or withdraw material from their collections as a result of SPAN archiving efforts are encouraged to report these to COPPUL, as a means of evaluating the effectiveness of our program. Please use this Google form to report either retentions or withdrawals.
SPAN Program Evaluation Final Report 2022