Presenters: Jason Price, Claremont Colleges Library and SCELC Consortium
KBART stands for Knowledge Bases and Related Tools (a NISO group). Standards and best practices are challenging to move forward, so why should we “back this horse” versus something else?
This group is a collection of publishers, aggregators, knowledge base vendors, and librarians who want to create a universally acceptable holdings data format. Phase one of the report came out in January of this year, and the endorsement phase begins this month.
KBART expresses title level coverage by date and volume/issue. It’s a single solution for sharing holdings data across the scholarly communications supply chain. Essentially, it’s a simple metadata exchange format.
It wasn’t a simple process to get to this schema. They thought about all of the data in knowledge bases, how data is transferred to and from other sources, and the role of licensing in this process. When a publisher produces content, it flows to hosts/databases then gateways then knowledge bases and then catalogs/lists/guides.
When a user has a citation, they initiate a process that queries the knowledge base, which returns a list of access points. However, this breaks down when the holdings information is incorrect or even worse, when it’s missing. We get stuck with a lot of inaccuracies and manual work. At some point, it gets to be too much to keep up with.
Everyone is working with the same kind of data, albeit slightly customized at a local level. If we can begin to move toward a standard way of distributing the data, we can then look at automating this process.
KBART is the end to our role as translators – no more badgering publishers for complete lists, no more teasing out title changes (including former titles and ISSNs), no more waiting for the knowledge base data team to translate the data, and no more out of date access lists.
What can librarians do? Learn more about KBART. Insist on “knowing” what you’re buying (require annual delivery of a useable holdings list before you pay). Enable publisher sales staff to make the case to their companies – show them that use goes up when it’s accurately represented in link resolvers. Follow up with continued requests as necessary.
The American Institute of Physics implemented the KBART standard on their own, and they’ve now officially joined the group. On the other hand “A Big Publisher” recognizes the problem, but they need to establish the priority of the change, which includes getting their hosting service to make appropriate changes. So, they need to hear from all of us about this.
Publishers who are interested should review the requirements and format the content availability data to meet those requirements. Check your work and make it available to customers. And, of course, register as a KBART member.
Vision for KBART: Currently in phase one of standardizing. Phase two is more content type coverage. Phase three is a dream of incorporating metadata distribution for consortia and institutional level holdings based on what is accessible from a particular IP.