Caren Milloy, Head of Projects at JISC Collections has written an article for Ariadne on the challenges faced in developing JISC Historic Books, JISC Journal Archives and JISC MediaHub. The article demonstrates how the latest information and digital literacy research was taken into account in designing the interface and functionality of the the platforms and talks of the complexity of metadata and licensing.
Here is an excerpt……
What Principles Guided the Development?
The development of the three platforms was guided by a range of studies on the behaviour, information-seeking strategies and digital and information literacy of students and academics (Figure 3). They were undertaken in the UK and US (an overview of these studies is provided in the Digital Information Seeker Report ). Many of these studies were funded by JISC, with a focus on providing institutions with practical recommendations on how to improve library services to support the needs of users, and how to keep such services simple for end-users (‘the “simple” philosophy’). One of the studies, the JISC national e-books observatory project  was managed by JISC Collections and provided a great deal of insight into the frustrations and issues faced by users in accessing and using e-book platforms.
The most influential study, however, in terms of the development of the JISC eCollections platforms, was the User Behaviour in Resource Discovery (UBiRD) study undertaken by Wong et al. at the Middlesex University Interaction Design Centre . The findings and recommendations of this study supported the user behaviour observed and the feedback gathered during the e-books observatory project, and also the frustrations expressed by librarian members of JISC Collections at various advisory board meetings. For JISC, as the funder of the studies, and JISC Collections, as a shared service for its members, it was important to take on board the recommendations of the studies in order to base design and development decisions on the evidence gathered.