A Belgian research team has developed a tool for linking knowledge services in the scholarly information environment. SFX allows a library to define links that fully integrate its information resources in the overall library service. The user is presented with context-sensitive links that are configured by the librarian on the basis of the institution's e-collections. Reference librarians can choose content from a range of information providers and interconnect content as desired.
Reference librarians need not depend on the linking services supplied by the information providers, on a specific set of identifiers, such as ISSN, SICI or DOI, or on particular protocols, such as Z39.50 or http. With SFX, librarians define the targets of the links only once for a range of information sources. By furnishing SFX "hooks" that link back to individual libraries, information providers enable libraries to add customised linking services based on the local resources and environment. The SFX server software derives from research conducted by Herbert van de Sompel and his team at Ghent University.