Educational exchange program with China emphasizes cooperation, not competition
Consortium's work on library system wins provincial recognition
Sharing resources is the most sensible path for libraries, says Art Rhyno, head of the Leddy Library's systems department.
He was one of three individuals honoured in February 2011 with the Ontario Council of University Libraries' Outstanding Contribution Award for their work on the integrated library system Conifer.
Conifer, which went live on the UWindsor campus in May 2009, is an implementation of the open source Evergreen system. The automated software manages librarial functions, including acquisitions, circulation, cataloguing, patron records, and serial control. UWindsor is a member of a consortium which worked in collaboration to develop the system. Besides Rhyno, the OCUL award recognized team members Robin Isard of Algoma University and Dan Scott of Laurentian University.
"Project Conifer represents how libraries can come together to share solutions," Rhyno said."Our previous commercial system was undermining a lot of campus infrastructure. This project kept us from revisiting catalogue cards."
He said he appreciates the recognition: "It's always nice to see the University of Windsor in the spotlight. There are so many innovations going on across this campus."
In announcing the award, council chair Leslie Weir praised the consortium for pooling resources.
"In a climate of ever more stringent fiscal restraint the partners in Project Conifer demonstrated that it is possible to work together across institutional boundaries to deliver a system and related services that are far superior to what they could accomplish on their own."
UWindsor university librarian Gwendolyn Ebbett said her staff is proud of Rhyno and the entire Conifer systems team.
"The project benefits not only the Leddy Library and the University of Windsor community, but also provides us with a wonderful partnership with Algoma University, Laurentian University, and Northern Ontario School of Medicine," she said.