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Controlled Access to Digital Libraries in Europe


The objective is to demonstrate how the CaseLibrary digital management system developed under FP3 can be used to improve the handling of electronic publications acquired by libraries through collaboration with publishers and supplier agencies.

No economic or technical models have yet been accepted as suitable for supporting the move towards electronic publishing or the shift from traditional holdings to access to electronic resources. The experience of large international publishing firms will be used as a basis for realistic investigation of how digital library management systems can be used to explore new economic models. This will provide evidence not only in support of rights management (cf. T-ECUP) but should also demonstrate the benefits of migrating from current library systems towards more open solutions.

In the digital library environment, end users are represented by digital objects. To achieve improved levels of user service, libraries require IT management functions which until now have been lacking in their automation systems, in particular for rights management, distributed access and security. CANDLE will focus on applying an existing library management system in environments which encourage publishers to offer electronic products to libraries in order to meet user needs by addressing licence metering, control, feedback, monitoring, rights management, access control and promotion.

Technical approach

CANDLE will add Windows NT server and client support to the Sun Solaris and Windows 3.x platforms. ZNavigator developed under CaseLibrary will also be used for information retrieval in the CANDLE environment. The functionality available to users is defined by the library systems administrator implemented through services provided by a Task Manager which enables client software to interact directly with resources on the network. The administration client will also be ported to NT and will be used to define resources such as electronic journal service, online catalogue, networked CD-ROM, etc. These will be grouped into resource groups for users who will be given unit accounts for various time periods.

Users will be offered a wide range of full text electronic journal information resources and associated services via networks within or outside the local library.

Publishers will be able to rely on the library to prevent unauthorised activities yet also be offered opportunities to target specific publications for specific audiences to boost demand.

Key issues

The main issues to be addressed are:
enhanced functionality to lock the digital library into publisher services, including control over access and payment of rights;
controlled management environment for users, librarians and information providers;
cost reductions for users by optimising publications handling and encouraging shared licensing and access.

Impact and expected results

Once CANDLE is completed, the product can be prepared for marketing almost immediately and will ensure:
benefits for publishers in providing an improved tool for reaching users and managing costs;
benefits for libraries in facilitating management, control and security;
benefits for users in providing user-friendly interfaces and in achieving cost reductions as a result of optimised handling.

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


EnWare S.A.
Núñez De Balboa 51-6
28801 Madrid

Participants (3)

National and Capodistrian University of Athens
South Bank University
United Kingdom
Borough Road
SE1 0AA London
Piazza San Marco 4