Associate University Librarian for Collections and Technical Services
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Librarians speculate that the digitization and delivery of items through the HathiTrust may reduce or eliminate demand for the corresponding print content. This belief feeds into a perception that monographs housed within academic libraries and delivered via such services are ripe for deduplication or outright withdrawal from research libraries, often while other institutions remain dependent upon those institutions to provide access for their patrons. Embracing HathiTrust’s emerging Shared Print Monograph Program, many member institutions committed to retain print monographs that correspond to those digitized from their collections. However, such commitments are not universal among the membership. Moreover, such commitments may be utilized by other institutions to withdraw against these holdings without fully understanding the potential local impact. Developing an evidence-based understanding of how the availability of digital access to these items might impact both local circulation and the rate of ILL/DD lending for such items is a critical step in determining how our institutions might approach the management of these collections in the future. The author ingested 10.7-million bibliographic records, 8.3-million circulation transactions, and 751,000 records corresponding to local holdings digitized and available in the HathiTrust into a single MSSQL database and examined the records to determine if the digitization status had any identifiable impact on circulation.