Libraries The Amazon Way

Aalborg University Library (AUB) do things the Amazon way. Based on Business Intelligence technology, the university library learn about loan behavior, and they offer the users of the library book recommendations based on this knowledge. When viewing information on specific books, the library's system recommends additional books that, based on past loan behavior, are expected to be of interest to the user.

This is achieved thanks to a group of students at Daisy, who during their master's studies have worked closely with AUB to develope a business intelligence system for AUB. The students produced a prototype to illustrate what business intelligence could do for the library.

The prototype is built into the library system AUBOLINE. It accumulates book meta data and loan data in a data warehouse. By applying different business rules to the data warehouse, the prototype offers content-based and item-based loan recommendation. Content-based recommendations are based on book titles, authors, topics, and categorizations. Item-based recommendations are based on loan statistics.

The feedback from AUB and IT-directors of several other Danish libraries was overwhelmingly positive. As a result, the prototype that was produced during the master's studies was subsequently put into operation at the library.