Future Direction of the FDLP: Modeling Initiative

In September 2010, the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) contracted with Ithaka S + R (Ithaka) to develop practical and sustainable models for the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) to continue to fulfill its mission in a changing information environment now dominated by digital technology. These models were intended to serve as a guide in planning the future direction of the Program. After careful review it was determined that the models presented by Ithaka are not practical and sustainable to meet the mission, goals, and principles of the FDLP. These models have some value as we move forward together with the library community to develop new models based on a shared vision which will increase flexibility for member libraries and ensure the vibrant future of the Program in the digital age.

The pdf archived version (847 KB) of the Ithaka Web site that was created as part of this study, as requested under the terms of the contract, is available in PDF format. GPO appreciates the comments that were submitted by members of our community during Ithaka’s study of the FDLP. Posted below are the previously released draft documents, public comments, and final modeling report to GPO. We look forward to obtaining comments and feedback from more participants in our depository library network. We plan to use these comments as part of the foundation to build on as we continue our future visioning and modeling process. The deadline for submission of comments is September 16, 2011.

Note that the Ithaka Web site ceased adding comments in March 2011.

Ithaka has provided a PDF of their final report. The final report is accompanied by a statement from GPO.

pdf Final Report with Recommendations and Accompanying GPO Statement (1.79 MB) : “Over the course of this project, Ithaka S+R released draft versions of the major components of the final report . . . via the project’s website; this final report brings together these deliverables, revised in response to community feedback on these drafts, in completion of the project.”

The other documents listed below are taken from the Ithaka Web site archive.

  1. pdf Environmental Scan (1.41 MB) : “A broad examination of the environment in which the FDLP exists . . . to identify the broad range of key external issues that can inform planning and decision-making.”
  2. pdf Report of Existing Networks/Consortia and Depository Programs (1.14 MB) : “A report on existing models of library networks, consortia, and depository programs.”
  3. pdf White Paper on New Models for the FDLP (1.56 MB) : “A series of new models for the FDLP that build upon the Direction [draft document, #2 below] released previously."
  4. pdf Value Proposition for the FDLP (762 KB) : “This document focuses on evaluating how the proposed Direction and Models will impact the Program’s sustainable accomplishment of its overall goals by considering the value proposition that they pose to libraries.”

The following additional documents, which were posted to the Ithaka Web site, have been reproduced here as well:

  1. pdf Summary of New Models (71 KB) : “This document summarizes the new models this project has drafted for the Federal Depository Library Program.”
  2. pdf Draft Direction (334 KB) : This document “lay[s] out an overall direction for the Program . . . and describes a set of functional and structural themes.”
  3. pdf Summary of the Research Phase Findings and Implications (338 KB) : “This ‘findings’ section . . . serves to conclude and reflect on the research phase of this project.”
Descriptions of documents delivered and posted to the FDLP Desktop have been taken verbatim from the Ithaka Web site or the documents themselves.

Join The Discussion

The community was asked to participate in a discussion of GPO's shared vision of the future of the FDLP.  Comments were used in the Thursday, October 20, 2011 day-long discussion, "Creating Our Shared Vision: Roles and Opportunities in the FDLP."

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Serials Processing Working Group

Help your library users with Government information in multiple languages. View the FDLP Academy webinar: Not Just in English Anymore: Locating and Using Government Resources in Other Languages. Find publications in over 100 different languages in the Catalog of U.S. Government Publications, including:

Point Spanish speakers to resources in the Spanish Language Documents: Online Resources LibGuide and distribute FDLP brochures in Spanish, available through Order FDLP Promotional Materials for both for depository and non-depository library audiences.

Serials Processing Working Group

Take a closer look at all the Congressional Serial Set contains on American Indian and Alaskan Natives. Our partner at the University of Oklahoma College of Law has a wonderful digital collection of American Indian and Alaskan Native documents published in the Serial Set from 1817-1899.

Here are just a couple of examples of what you find:

Yellow Fever

Shari Laster served on the DLC from 2010-2013, including a term as chair (2012-2013). Currently, Shari is the head of Open Stack Collections at Arizona State University Library, where she is responsible for collections strategies and operations for ASU Library's open stack collections, which include millions of print and openly-accessible digital resources, including federal, state, and local government resources. Shari has continued to hold active leadership roles in ALA GODORT, including a tenure as chair (2017-2018). She is also a project team member with the PEGI Project, a collaborative effort seeking to address long-term access and preservation challenges related to born-digital Government information.

outdoors 002

June is Great Outdoors Month! it’s time to encourage people to get outside and recreate responsibly! Whether they are headed to a national park or other lands protected with the help of NPS programs and partners, let visitors know how they can experience, enjoy, and learn from the outdoors. As we continue to also celebrate 100 Years of Health, share the importance of health for all and how every person can benefit from being outdoors.


Have you spotted a UFO? Check out Project Blue Book – Unidentified Flying Objects from the U.S. Air Force (CGP record).


Congrats to FDLP veteran Deborah Mongeau on her upcoming retirement from the University of Rhode Island. Having served for 46 years since 1975, her deep, dark secret was that she never took a Government documents course in library school. She became an accidental FDLP librarian, and right from the beginning, making Government information accessible has been the centerpiece of her entire career. In retirement, she hopes to find a way to continue to make it so.

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