This summer, Johns Hopkins University joined BorrowDirect, an Ivies Plus consortium that includes the libraries of the Ivy League—Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Penn, Princeton, and Yale—and the libraries of the University of Chicago and MIT.
JHU faculty, staff, and students now have access to the more than 50 million volumes held by the consortium members. Requests can be made for books that are not available at Hopkins, including books that JHU doesn't own, books that are checked out, and books that are on reserve.
BorrowDirect began service in 1999 with founding institutions Columbia, Penn, and Yale, in partnership with the Research Libraries Group. The group grew in 2002 with the addition of Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, and Princeton. In 2011, Harvard and MIT joined BorrowDirect, and the consortium added the University of Chicago in 2013. In the 15 years since its inception, BorrowDirect has filled more than 1.8 million user requests.
"We were honored to be invited to participate in this consortium," said Winston Tabb, Sheridan Dean of University Libraries and Museums. "This is an extraordinary opportunity for us to open up the collections of some of the nation's premier research libraries to our users. At the same time, we are able to share the riches of our own holdings with scholars from the other 10 member schools. This is a truly innovative partnership, which draws on the respective strengths of each institution to enable each of us to better serve our own faculty and students."
Through BorrowDirect, users have the ability to search and request material from across the 11 institutions' libraries. Materials are received three to five business days after a request is made. More than 230,000 books, music scores, and other returnable items were loaned to member users in the past fiscal year. Since July 1, when JHU joined the consortium, the university libraries have fulfilled more than 900 requests, and our own borrowers have received nearly 800 volumes.
To get started with BorrowDirect, Hopkins users sign on using their JHED ID. They can then search the catalog, select a pick up location, and place a request. If BorrowDirect can't fill the request, the system will pass users seamlessly to an Interlibrary Loan form.
JHU community members are invited to try BorrowDirect and let us know what you think at BorrowDirect@jhu.edu.
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