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a secure, managed environment.The system should be in place in time to handle the
influx of voluntary and legal deposits, due to arrive in early 2004. Much of this material
will be `born-digital', but some will be the result of digitisation programmes.
The Library's DOM strategy is currently still in its design phase, and developers are
considering three main options: adapting an open-source product (such as DSpace), using a
commercial product, or commissioning their own bespoke solution. In the past the Library
has favoured in-house developments, but policy has changed recently.Where suitable com-
mercial off-the-shelf packages are available the library will use these, mainly to reduce
redundancy of effort and costs, to enable it to benefit from the community of product
users, and to take advantage of system development and maintenance programmes.
As a public sector organisation, all substantial purchases must be put out to tender, and
in this case the process is expected to commence later in 2003.The advantages of open-
source products are widely recognised large and enthusiastic user groups, significant
cost savings, conformity to standards. Some open-source applications lack adequate docu-
mentation which can impact seriously on ease of use and maintenance. Configuring an
off-the-shelf system can be time-consuming and costly, as we saw in the case with CRM
software (see above).
It is anticipated that most of the integration and rollout process will be carried out by
the Library's experienced in-house staff.While some elements may require the help of
consultants, the Library aims to keep this to a minimum.The Library has a number of
other ongoing projects dealing with digital items, and these will eventually be integrated
with the DOM Programme. In terms of workflow management, the introduction of the
system will be carried out incrementally, beginning with new materials and followed by
the gradual integration of the backlog into the new environment.
Intellectual Property Rights monitoring is likely to be integrated into the DOM sys-
tem's functionality. Management of IPR becomes increasingly central to the Library as it
Digital Asset
Management Systems
51
The British Library's new building at St Pancras, London
T
he British Libr
ary