Overview and History
BorrowDirect is an unmediated library resource sharing partnership encompassing eleven Ivies Plus academic institutions supplying over 230,000 books, music scores, and other returnable library items per year. BorrowDirect went live in the fall of 1999 after a four year planning and development period during which the three founding institutions, Columbia, Penn, and Yale, partnered with the Research Libraries Group (RLG) for project management and assessment. The BorrowDirect Partnership expanded to seven member libraries in 2002 with the addition of Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, and Princeton. In 2004, the Partnership exceeded 100,000 transactions for the first time. The Partnership grew to include Harvard and MIT in 2011. The University of Chicago and Johns Hopkins each joined in 2013 and 2014 respectively. Since its inception, BorrowDirect has successfully filled over 1.8 million user requests and counting.
How it works
BorrowDirect offers library users the ability to search and request research material from a federated union catalog of over 50 million volumes. Real time shelf status and a load leveling algorithm distribute requests evenly across the Partnership, and expedited delivery ensures a 3-5 day turnaround for all requests. Making use of NISO standards, BorrowDirect integrates with the disparate library systems to provide local circulation of borrowed material and integrated resource management throughout the lifecycle of the transaction.
What we do
BorrowDirect growth and expansion over the years:
What it means to patrons in the Partnership
BorrowDirect offers the breadth and depth of the Ivies Plus libraries to faculty, students, and staff from a single, simple search interface. The intelligent availability logic quickly determines the most efficient provider of each item. The speed of delivery, exceptionally high fill rate, and twelve week loan period offer users a consistent, seamless requesting experience that has established BorrowDirect as a core library service across the Partnership.
- Peter Collins, (2012) "Fear and loathing in cooperative collection development", Interlending & Document Supply, Vol. 40 Issue: 2, pp.100 – 104.
- Danuta A. Nitecki, Carol L. Jones, (2004) "Borrow Direct: its impact on service quality at Yale University Library", Interlending & Document Supply, Vol. 32 Issue: 3, pp.146 – 151.
- Krall, R. (2000). “Get It Fast, and Get It Cheap'--What's an ILL librarian to do?” American Libraries, Vol. 31 Issue: 10, pp. 41 - 42.