LOUIS: The Louisiana Library Network is a project of the Louisiana Academic Library Information Network (LALINC), a consortium of public and private college and university libraries. This partnership, established in 1992 by academic library deans and directors, currently has 49 members, and is funded by LALINC members and the Louisiana Board of Regents.
With a centralized support staff, LOUIS combines the collective resources of all members to produce a dynamic library consortium. LOUIS provides member-approved initiatives, which include information technology solutions such as an integrated library system, a digital library system, an interlibrary loan system, electronic scholarly resources, remote access to resources any time, any place, as well as a host of other services.
LOUIS is growing, adding new member institutions, as a result of the continued efforts of the state to refine the community and technical college system.
LALINC members elect an Executive Board to oversee the initiatives of the consortium.
The mission of LOUIS is to manage and operate the Louisiana Online University Information System as stipulated by the Louisiana Academic Library Information Network Consortium. To achieve this mission, LOUIS will provide library automation services; provide access to and delivery of electronic information; provide a network of training opportunities for library staff; promote cooperation and communication among multi-type libraries; research and implement new information technologies; and maximize the purchasing power of Louisiana academic libraries.
LOUIS strives to
- ensure that Louisiana’s academic libraries are the premier source for authoritative information to support the research, teaching, and learning needs of their communities;
- foster an environment of communication, cooperation and collaboration within the state;
- identify, evaluate, and implement state-of-the-art information technologies; and
- be a leader in providing library information services and a model of collaboration.
Initiatives & Services
LOUIS initiatives are researched, purchased and implemented collaboratively. Members avoid costly duplication in acquisitions though these collaborative efforts. Integrated Library Systems provides the library with intuitive, robust technologies that support library business management and access the library’s scholarly resources. Resource sharing further enhances a library’s collection by allowing reciprocal lending and borrowing between members. The digital library was established to provide electronic access to unique historical treasures. The electronic databases provided by LOUIS support the core curricula in all two and four-year colleges and universities.
These services support the main initiatives of the consortium:
- Library Automation (SirsiDynix Symphony)
- Digital Library (OCLC CONTENTdm)
- Interlibrary Loan (Atlas ILLiad)
- Authentication (EZproxy)
- EBSCO Discovery Service (EDS)
- Link Resolver (EBSCO LinkSource)
- A-to-Z MARC (EBSCO)
- Google Scholar
- Government Documents (Marcive)
- Custom Services and Programming
- 24×7 on call
- Backup, Security, Disaster Recovery
- FootPrints Incident Reporting
- Systems and Network Monitoring
- Negotiation, Licensing, Access and Statistics
- Statewide Consortium Purchases
- Pay-to-Play Consortium Purchases
- LOUIS Users Conferences
- LOUIS System Administrator Meetings
- LOUIS Newsletter
- LOUIS Webpage
- Online Documentation
- Consortium Listserves
- LALINC Executive Board
- LALINC Strategic Planning Task Force
- LALINC Membership Fee Task Force
- LALINC Statistics Task Force
- LALINC Brochure Task Force
- LOUIS Digital Library (Committee)
The LOUIS community has always worked diligently to make the most of its funding. Despite economic challenges in higher education and reduced funding for LOUIS, members have opted to work to keep the collaboration in place.
Member Funding vs. State Funding:
Members currently provide eighty-eight percent (88%) of the funding for LOUIS; the other twelve percent (12%) is provided by a Board of Regents grant.
Doing More with Less:
LOUIS saves the State millions of dollars each year through its initiatives and services.
What is LOUIS?
- A statewide library consortium originating in 1992
- Two decades of collective collaboration and cooperation among Louisiana’s academic libraries
- Voluntary participation for the mutual benefit of all
- A staff of nine
When/why did it start?
- Due to lack of funding to the library
- To “level the playing field”
- To share and equalize technology and resources in academic libraries across the state
- To fulfill common goals
What does LOUIS do?
- Provides 24x7x365 technology and enterprise solutions in a cloud environment to library staff, students and faculty so scholarly materials (e-books and e-journals) can be purchased, identified, searched, and shared
- Makes available rare historical documents that exist only in Archives
- Leverages the purchasing power of academic libraries
- Reduces duplication of efforts
- Saves the state millions each year
- Provides an average of 60% of total library materials
- Does “More with Less”
Who are members of LOUIS?
- All institutions in the UL, SU, LSU, LAICU and LCT systems
- The State Library of Louisiana
How are decisions made?
- By issue specific Task Forces and Committees comprised of library experts from around the state
Who governs LOUIS?
- Louisiana Academic Library Information Network Consortium (LALINC) Executive Board
- Board of Regents
Where is the LOUIS Office located?
- LSU Information Technology Services
What does LOUIS cost?
- As of 2013, 4.1 million
What is the source of funds?
- Historically, a Board of Regents grant provided 70% of the funds and members covered the remaining 30%.
- Currently, members provide 88% of the funding, and the Board of Regents grant covers the remaining 12%.
How much has LOUIS saved the state?
- Since 1992, $222,635,523
- In 2013, $29,496,503
What does LOUIS provide to academic libraries?
- Purchasing Power
- Shared expertise, technology, software, and resources
- Collaboration with the State Library, Parish Libraries and K-12
- At least 60% (72,000) of total library items
- See attachments for greater detail
How does LOUIS help the state?
- Reduces duplication
- Creates purchasing consortiums
- Creates and shares experts
- Saves the state millions
- Provides a model on how to collaborate and consolidate
What does it mean to the taxpayer?
- Being smart and getting more with less tax dollars
- More efficiency, expertise, collaboration and cooperation
What if LOUIS didn’t exist?
- “Less for More”
- Accreditation would be in jeopardy
- Sadly, a message that hits home is “No LOUIS, No Accreditation, No football/baseball/softball/basketball”
Dr. Jim Purcell
Commissioner of Higher Education
Louisiana Board of Regents
“We are proud to be associated with a network that provides high quality service at an economical cost. With technology at the center of education, the collective resources provided through LOUIS are invaluable to our students and beneficial to all of higher education.”
Dr. Carolyn Hargrave
Vice President for Academic Affairs & Technology Transfer
“LOUIS is an excellent example of what can be accomplished in higher education when all campuses work collaboratively toward a common goal. In this case, the common goal was to enhance access to library and information resources for every student in every college and university in Louisiana, regardless of the size or location of the campus and to do so in the most cost-effective way. It’s success is due to the dedicated efforts of dozens of academic librarians for over 20 years, to the knowledge, experience, and hard work of the LOUIS Team, and to the willingness of the leadership of LSU, especially LSU Libraries and the LSU Computing Center, to make their library and computing resources available to accomplish this important goal for Louisiana.”
Fletcher Technical Community College
“LOUIS has been called the great equalizer because the consortium allows small colleges to offer its students and faculty access to electronic resources to the fullest extent and benefits academic libraries and the state by providing the resources necessary to achieve regional, state, and national accreditations.”
Lauren Wade McAdams
Baton Rouge Community College
“LOUIS makes it possible for our library to provide an outstanding range of electronic resources to our students, faculty, and staff despite limitations on both our time and our budget.”
Elaine P. Nunez Community College
“LOUIS means everything to Elaine P. Nunez Community College. Without the excellent pricing made possible by the collective bargaining by the LOUIS staff, we would be able to afford less than one tenth of the databases and services provided by LOUIS. Students and faculty enjoy credible sources for their assignments. Many faculty members will only accept papers that have been developed by using the databases. Our accreditation depends on the service that LOUIS gives us at our fingertips.”