The Cornell University Library (ICUL) in Ithaca, Cornell Information Technologies (CIT) in Ithaca, and the Weill Cornell Medical Center (WCMC) in New York City are investigating various methods to make access to licensed library content more seamless. Historically, the libraries at both campuses have operated independently. The libraries have two different funding mechanisms and organizational reporting structure. Content may be licensed for one campus, but not the other. Further complication is caused by WCMC's close working relationship to two other institutions in New York City, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and The Rockefeller University. With print journals, cooperative collection development was possible between the three Manhattan partners. Now days, staff from each institution still walk over to the other building and log in to library computers for electronic access to something not available at their home institution, but faculty and grad students are demanding seamless access to everything. The old model is broken.
Out of this has come a growing interest in investigating how Shibboleth might be used to solve authorization problems. CUL uses ezproxy for remote access to licensed library content. WCMC uses VPN, or WebVPN.
How do we create a Shibboleth-based model to address today's problems that can be extended into the future?