Colorado Universities Launch Multi-Library Partnership to Enhance Access to Scholarship

The libraries of four higher education systems in Colorado have come together to launch Digital Collections of Colorado (DCC) to improve access to digital information created by their faculty, students and staff.

The libraries of Colorado State University, the University of Colorado, Colorado Mesa University, and Colorado School of Mines have entered into a partnership with the vendor Ex Libris. By using the company’s DigiTool ® software, the libraries have created the Digital Collections of Colorado “repository” for managing and making available digital files representing all manner of scholarly works over the Internet.

Digital Collection of Colorado can be accessed at

“This is another great example of academic libraries working together to both lower costs and increase value,” according to CSU’s Vice President for Information Technology and Dean of Libraries Patrick Burns.

A key goal of the multi-library partnership is to provide easy access to significant scholarly works created on the campuses of the four systems to all users – locally in Colorado, nationally and internationally. The libraries also wish to use DigiTool to help individual researchers and scholars maximize their impact by advancing knowledge and science more quickly. By making such scholarship available online, the libraries hope to assist their campuses in demonstrating the breadth, quality and scope of research and scholarly activities being conducted.

“I am delighted that the University of Colorado Boulder is a partner in the creation, maintenance and development of our joint repository,” said CU Boulder’s Dean of Libraries James Williams. “We will have a growing need to curate, deposit and provide perpetual open access to the intellectual assets of the Boulder campus, and this repository provides the state-of-the-art means to do so.”

An important objective is to deliver value on the investments made by Colorado citizens, the U.S. Federal Government, and public and private granting agencies by making the products of funded research such as academic papers and digital recordings more readily available to all.

Jerry Perry, director of the University of Colorado Health Sciences Library on the Anschutz Medical Campus, heralded the debut of the service. “Our shared service partnership, which recently welcomed the libraries at Colorado School of Mines and Colorado Mesa University, is opening the world to the incredible scholarship occurring here in our state, and we’re doing so with great efficiency and outstanding savings,” said Perry.

The Morgan Library at Colorado State University in Fort Collins is hosting the service and providing staffing support, where DigiTool has been in implementation since 2007. Scholarly files being made accessible include digital versions of dissertations and theses awarded by the university systems, papers by faculty in PDF format, digital photographs, maps and images of artifacts in the libraries’ collections, and video recordings of campus events.

Anything “born digital,” or originally in print and subsequently digitized, and of a scholarly nature can be added to the repository. The service provides a means to store the files while also making them searchable on the Internet by search engines such as Google and by the libraries’ local catalogs and search systems.

“I am very pleased that the University of Colorado Colorado Springs is a member of the Digital Collections of Colorado developed by the CU and CSU libraries,” said Dean and Professor of the Kraemer Family Library Teri Switzer. “This shared service digital repository is an important tool in the management, dissemination, and preservation of UCCS’ scholarship and intellectual property.”

For additional information about the Digital Collections of Colorado, please contact Dawn Paschal, Assistant Dean, Digital Library and ePublishing Services, at 970-491-1849 or