In 2011, consultant Marshall Breeding described Library Services Platform products as follows:
The products are library-specific, they enable the library to perform its services, internally and externally though their built-in functionality, as well as exposing a platform of Web services and other APIs for interoperability and custom development. [source]
With years of implementation and usage experience behind us, I suggest an alternative definition, one that contains important commonality with Breeding's:
It's important to note that the LSP model is entirely different than integrated library system (ILS) model for library systems that preceded it. Releases were much less frequent (typically annually) and API usage was not a core component of the service. Thus, the migration to an LSP model with local extension supported isn't a trivial matter for an academic library.
The question is, how can PMI help?
One presentation that stood out to me at this year's ELUNA annual meeting was given by Jan Waterhouse from SUNY Albany, "Project and Change Management for a Successful LSP Migration." Jan's approach, as a Project Management Professional, was to approach the topic with a focus on change management and on Project Management Body of Knowledge Guide principles. I can't recall seeing a PMBOK Guide-focused presentation in library technology prior to this one. Jan and I later worked together on a session for the 2019 American Library Association annual conference that describes the PMI resources and opportunities listed above. I'm hoping that it gets accepted!
But, in summary, the move from the legacy ILS to the LSP is a significant one from a project management perspective. In my view, the potential for academic libraries to employ PMI's tools and approaches remains largely unexplored.
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