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FHWA Research Library. Martha Soneira Team Leader, Strategic Communications Federal Highway Administration. On Becoming A World-Class Library. Library Enhancements = Happy Customers. Staffing. Cataloger. The FHWA Library Bunch. Photo Cataloger . Technician. Manager.

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Fhwa research library l.jpg

FHWA Research Library

Martha Soneira

Team Leader, Strategic Communications

Federal Highway Administration

On becoming a world class library l.jpg
On BecomingA World-Class Library

Library enhancements happy customers l.jpg
Library Enhancements = Happy Customers

Staffing l.jpg


The FHWA Library Bunch





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Challenges --Undoing “Bad Habits”

  • Library seen as a source for copies of

    FHWA reports to keep or give away to


  • Photocopying of reports in their entirety in violation of copyright law.

  • Using the library as a dumping ground for unwanted or unneeded publications.

  • Arrangement of collection by publication type or geographic location of publisher.

  • Use of Access Database used to create “catalog” records.

  • TFHRC employees spending a lot of their time trying to find information or publications on their own, instead of coming to the library.

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More Challenges

  • Greater information access

  • Information overload

  • Justifying one’s existence

  • Money

    If we have more information today, we suffer for this very reason from a dearth of knowledge.”

    Brookings Institute

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Library Goals and Objectives

  • Collections

  • Photo Archive

  • Outreach

  • Interlibrary Loans

  • Document Delivery

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  • FHWA Reports will be fully cataloged, rearranged and shelved more appropriately

  • Organize and catalog State Research reports

    Establish a process for

    disposition of giveaways

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  • Aug 05-Mar 06 ½-time cataloger cataloged 1600 items.

  • Batchloading project was partially successful – DBText ran against OCLC

  • 1751 records matched

  • 2260 unmatched

  • (due to incomplete Access database records converted to DBText)

  • May 06 FHWA Research Library is the only holder of

  • 1,275 TLCat items

  • 240 OCLC items

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Photo Archive


  • To catalog

    and store images for

    use by FHWA staff


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Interlibrary Loans & Document Delivery


  • Establish onsite access to OCLC WorldCat and Resource Sharing

  • Use local government, academic & special

    library collections

  • Subscribe to electronic

    resources (online indexes,

    full-text journals)

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Resources Developed

  • Reference Interview

  • Targeted Literature Searches

  • Access to Databases

  • IRRD through Transport

  • Private STINET(Defense Technical Information



  • UC Berkeley Earthquake Engineering

    Online Archive

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  • Promote library services

    Intranet Web page

    Open House

    Informational Meetings

    Training sessions

  • Evaluate

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Open House Announcement

  • Want an update on library services and resources available to you now?

  • Here’s your opportunity to meet with those who care about your information needs!

  • Open House

  • Turner-Fairbank

  • Technical Reference


  • Meet Technical Reference Center staff and learn about available and planned services.

  • Stay for demonstrations of new and improved online resources

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Question . . .

Presentation to Leadership Council

Why does TFHRC need a technical reference center

or a

professional librarian?

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Our Next Steps

  • Searchable online catalog on a TFHRC server

  • Create a Web presence for the library with links

  • Solicit management support for funding for subscription databases & print subscriptions & books

  • Investigate ways to provide more electronic content to customers

  • Continually market services to employees

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Staying Alive

  • Maintain the image of “The place to go for FHWA R&D reports”

  • Preserve institutional memory

  • Explore options for “going digital”