Significant progress has been made on the development of CC-PLUS. A demo of the current system, which includes ten pilot institutions/consortia, was shown to the Steering Committee. Users of the software can bring in users, providers, and institutions, and the institutions can be clustered by groups or types (such as Carnegie Classification). Reports can be automatically harvested each month or manually harvested if the time period has passed. Institutions can have manager-level accounts to share some responsibility with the consortium’s central office. Flexible reporting is available as well.
Development directions under consideration include a web-based version of CC-PLUS that will harvest data and create downloadable reports without long-term data storage (similar to COUNTER’s need for a tool), integrating data from external sources like the GOKb service to enhance CC-PLUS data, more extensive data visualizations, incorporating non-COUNTER R5 data and/or providing a transformation service for R4 data, automated checks for restated data, and an API to make data within the CC-PLUS database available to other services. There is a planned request to extend this project through June 30, 2021.
The Steering Committee had a discussion about the future framing of CC-PLUS and its associated community. Active code development and a sustainable governance structure are deeply important to this program’s success. Its strength is as an open source solution for gathering usage statistics, but high levels of use, partnerships/integrations, and supporting tools will be important to building and maintaining an active community with the resources needed for the software and any associated services. There is also a valued role of such a community in advocating for COUNTER compliance and gathering information for the practical application of the standard and to inform future development of the standard. It was suggested that the governance could have a similar structure to that of COUNTER, with layers of committees from the technical to the administrative. Ongoing maintenance of any implementation of this software should not be underestimated, due to the demands of managing a usage statistics program. Intentional commitments and shared goals will be important to sustaining CC-PLUS as it emerges into its next stage.
The development focus is on the front end of the software now, and the UX Developer is building out the pages more fully. The goal is to have all basic pages able to display data by the ICOLC meeting in April. The demonstration server is now automatically harvesting eight vendors’ data: ACS, BioOne, OUP, MUSE, Sage, T&F, Wiley, and JSTOR. All four master reports (TR, PR, DR, and IR) are being harvested, subject to their availability from the vendors.
There has been significant interest in the upcoming CC-PLUS pilot, and the planned pilot participants will be finalized and invited soon. The goal is to cover all typical use cases (individual library, self-hosting consortium, hosted consortium, ConsortiaManager users, etc.).
Governance in place is for project, but bylaws that establish the way the community should function will be important to the project’s future and sustainability. A draft of bylaws will be prepared for the next Advisory Board meeting. A draft of a possible MOU was also presented to the Advisory Board to start a conversation about a more formal relationship between CC-PLUS and COUNTER.
A presentation about CC-PLUS is on the ICOLC April meeting agenda. This will an opportunity to provide an update on the work of the project and check in with the larger community for feedback.
Almost all of the development for the core functionality of the software (harvesting, validation, etc.) is complete. Remaining items include bulk uploads and queue management. Code developed by Bernd Oberknapp for the COUNTER validation tool has been useful for this project, and future collaboration is expected to continue to prevent duplication of effort. The interface is still in a wire framing status, but coding of the interface will begin soon, and a minimum viable product in expected by late April. Biweekly meetings with COUNTER, Jisc, and ConsortiaManager have been critical to advancing this project in terms of developing sustainable software code as well as a sustainable community.
A pilot with around six participants, both consortia and individual libraries, is scheduled to take place from May to September. CC-PLUS will host the software for the pilot centrally, making this a useful test of the capacity needs for hosting this as a service. At a later stage of the pilot, one or two of the pilot participants may be asked to install the software locally. There will be monthly check-ins with piloting entities as well as more formal feedback surveys. Potential pilot participants have been identified, and an email will go out in February. CC-PLUS will request a one-year extension from IMLS (with the existing financial resources) to allow for challenges with publishers implementing COUNTER Release 5, ensure an effective pilot, and build in refinements.
A draft website has been developed, and a contractor will be used to finalize the logo and look and feel of the site. The website is expected to be live around May. How the program will be included in the ICOLC meeting in Columbia is still unknown.