Archive for the 'Serials Crisis' Category

"Journal Subscription Expenditure of UK Higher Education Institutions, Version 3″

Posted in Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on July 27th, 2015

Stuart Lawson and Ben Meghreblian have published "Journal Subscription Expenditure of UK Higher Education Institutions, Version 3." in F1000Research.

Here's an excerpt:

The academic libraries of higher education institutions (HEIs) pay significant amounts of money each year for access to academic journals. The amounts paid are often not transparent especially when it comes to knowing how much is paid to specific publishers. Therefore data on journal subscription expenditure were obtained for UK HEIs using a series of Freedom of Information requests. Data were obtained for 153 HEIs' expenditure with ten publishers over a five-year period. The majority of institutions have provided figures but some are still outstanding. The data will be of interest to those who wish to understand the economics of scholarly communication and see the scale of payments flowing within the system. Further research could replicate the data collection in other jurisdictions.

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    DSpace@MIT Tops 3 Million Downloads

    Posted in Digital Repositories, Institutional Repositories, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on May 26th, 2015

    MIT's DSpace@MIT repository has had over 3 million downloads as of the end of April.

    Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

    The Open Access Articles Collection in DSpace@MIT now contains over 16,600 articles, which collectively were downloaded over 90,000 times in April.

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      "Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On | Periodicals Price Survey 2015"

      Posted in Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on April 24th, 2015

      Stephen Bosch and Kittie Henderson have published "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On | Periodicals Price Survey 2015" in Library Journal.

      Here's an excerpt:

      Open access (OA) continues to develop, but some financial analysts, such as Sami Kassab, executive director at investment firm Exane BNP Paribas, now believe that OA may no longer be a pressure point on commercial publishing. OA has not been the disruptive force on commercial publishing for which many had hoped.

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        "Freedom of Information Requests Uncover the Lack of Transparency in Journal Subscription Costs"

        Posted in Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on October 16th, 2014

        Stuart Lawson and Ben Meghreblian have published "Freedom of Information Requests Uncover the Lack of Transparency in Journal Subscription Costs" in The LSE's Daily Blog on American Politics and Policy.

        Here's an excerpt:

        Making use of the UK's Freedom of Information (FOI) law we sent FOI requests to over 100 higher education institutions via the website asking them to release their data. Using this website has the dual benefit of making the process simple to scale up when sending multiple requests and also ensuring that the responses are in the public domain.

        In two rounds of requests we asked for the amount of money that these institutions had paid to six of the largest academic publishers—Wiley, Springer, Taylor & Francis, Sage, Oxford University Press, and Cambridge University Press—over a period of five years. The results have been collated and over £80m of subscription expenditure has been openly released. This process was for the most part straightforward and just required a lot of persistence and a little knowledge of library processes, which allowed us to know how to phrase the request and how to respond to any queries from the institutions.

        Digital Scholarship | "A Quarter-Century as an Open Access Publisher"

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          2013 Study of Subscription Prices for Scholarly Society Journals

          Posted in Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on October 15th, 2013

          Allen Press has released the 2013 Study of Subscription Prices for Scholarly Society Journals.

          Here's an excerpt:

          This study aims to provide information to society and association publishers on pricing and library budget trends, strategies libraries use for cost containment, content selection and cancellation criteria, access preferences, and user behavior.

          The Allen Press panel and several other studies done in 2012 highlight that librarians use a variety of strategies to work within budgets that are not improving significantly. The following is a review of scholarly journal price trends during the past year. The data presented in this study summarize historical prices of approximately 200 publications appearing in the Allen Press Buyer’s Guide to Scientific, Medical, and Scholarly Journals.

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            "Serials Price Projections for 2014"

            Posted in Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on September 30th, 2013

            EBSCO has released its "Serials Price Projections for 2014."

            Here's an excerpt from the press release:

            For 2014, the overall effective publisher price increases for academic and academic/medical libraries are expected to be in the range of 6 to 8 percent (before currency impact).

            The projected mid-single digit serial price increases indicate that the ongoing initiatives and debates in the academic publishing world are having very little impact on fundamental business models and pricing strategies. Librarians and smaller publishers will continue to face difficult choices as the renewal of individual journal titles and other non-bundled content is balanced with the ongoing obligations of e-journal package or "Big Deal" content.

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              Harvard: "Faculty Advisory Council Memorandum on Journal Pricing: Major Periodical Subscriptions Cannot Be Sustained"

              Posted in ARL Libraries, Open Access, Research Libraries, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on April 23rd, 2012

              Harvard University's Faculty Advisory Council on the Library has issued "Faculty Advisory Council Memorandum on Journal Pricing: Major Periodical Subscriptions Cannot Be Sustained"

              Here's an excerpt:

              Since the Library now must change its subscriptions and since faculty and graduate students are chief users, please consider the following options open to faculty and students (F) and the Library (L), state other options you think viable, and communicate your views:

              1. Make sure that all of your own papers are accessible by submitting them to DASH in accordance with the faculty-initiated open-access policies (F).

              2. Consider submitting articles to open-access journals, or to ones that have reasonable, sustainable subscription costs; move prestige to open access (F).

              3. If on the editorial board of a journal involved, determine if it can be published as open access material, or independently from publishers that practice pricing described above. If not, consider resigning (F).

              4. Contact professional organizations to raise these issues (F).

              5. Encourage professional associations to take control of scholarly literature in their field or shift the management of their e-journals to library-friendly organizations (F).

              6. Encourage colleagues to consider and to discuss these or other options (F).

              7. Sign contracts that unbundle subscriptions and concentrate on higher-use journals (L).

              8. Move journals to a sustainable pay per use system, (L).

              9. Insist on subscription contracts in which the terms can be made public (L).

              | Transforming Scholarly Publishing through Open Access: A Bibliography: "This work gives an outstanding overview of scholarship relating to the growing Open Access movement." — George Machovec, The Charleston Advisor 12, no. 2 (2010): 3. | Digital Scholarship |

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                RLUK Wants Serials Price Reductions to Avoid Cuts That Would "Fatally Compromise" Research

                Posted in Publishing, Research Libraries, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on November 30th, 2010

                Research Libraries UK has issued a press release about needed serials price reductions.

                Here's an excerpt from the press release:

                At its recent conference, RLUK announced it would not support future journal big deals unless they showed real price reductions. With a cut to the teaching grant and research budgets flat at best, RLUK members believe that unless this happens they will be forced to cancel significant numbers of subscriptions which will fatally compromise the UK's capacity for research.

                For the past several years JISC Collections have negotiated with the publishers on behalf of UKHE. RLUK is so worried about the current situation that it has instructed JISC Collections to secure contracts which will not only rescind the unreasonable price rises of the last three years, but also offer affordable deals for the future. If reasonable deals cannot be struck RLUK libraries will be forced to provide information resources to their researchers and students in other ways.

                "The capacity of UK universities to continue to pay such large year-on-year increases for access to scholarly journals is not infinite," said Professor Michael Arthur, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Leeds and Chair of the Russell Group of Universities. "To ensure the continued vitality of the UK's world-beating research base we need to reassess the costs of electronic access and find a new balance between the value added by publishers and the charges they make. We realise that finding such a balance may not be easy, but if we fail to address the problem now there will be serious long-term consequences for research and teaching in the UK."

                "The UK Higher Education sector now spends almost £200m per year on access to journals and databases," explained David Prosser, RLUK's Executive Director. "This is 10% of the total QR funding the sector receives and increases above inflation each year. We understand the value publishers add to the publication process, but publishers must also understand that they cannot continue to increase prices at a time when budgets are so tight. We do not wish to cancel big deals, but we shall have no alternative unless the largest publishers substantially reduce their prices."

                "Some RLUK members now pay over £1m a year to access journals from the largest publisher," said Phil Sykes, Chair of RLUK and Librarian at Liverpool University. "With annual journal price inflation running at double the rate of RPI since 2000, it has distorted the acquisition policies of libraries, with an ever-increasing proportion of budgets being spent on electronic big deals. This leads to diminishing funds for monographs, textbooks, and journals from smaller publishers, which cannot but damage scholarship and teaching in UKHE."

                | Digital Scholarship |

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                  Serials Crisis: "California against Nature"

                  Posted in Open Access, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on July 6th, 2010

                  Peter Suber has published "California against Nature" in the SPARC Open Access Newsletter.

                  Here's an excerpt:

                  * If publishers have been accelerating into a brick wall for decades, and libraries have been warning about the inevitable collision for decades, then why hasn't there been a collision before now?

                  There are two answers. First, many collisions have already occurred, even if they came and went without the same media attention. Universities have been canceling titles by the hundreds—and in the case of big-deal cancellations, by the thousands—for years. Even when collisions are incremental and cumulative rather than sudden and explosive, they have the same finality. And they have the same catastrophic effect on access to the portion of new research that is metered out to paying customers.

                  Second, when universities renewed more titles than they could realistically afford, it's not because found previously undiscovered or undisclosed pots of money. It's because they made painful cuts in order to find the money. Most of these cuts came from their book budgets, extending a serials crisis in the sciences to a monograph crisis in the humanities. The long series of small collisions is a measure of the pain universities have endured to postpone a wider and larger one.

                  At some point there really isn't any money left, or the money can only be found through cuts more painful than journal cancellations. After several decades of hyperinflationary price increases, followed by a severe recession, continuing business as usual will bring a critical mass of universities to that critical point. Publishers aren't just witnesses to this impending crunch. Those that continue to charge hyperinflationary price increases are accelerating it. Those that won't survive the resulting shake-out, even if their own prices had been moderate and affordable, will be co-victims with researchers and research institutions.

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                    ICOLC “Statement on the Global Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Consortial Licenses” Reissued

                    Posted in Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on June 20th, 2010

                    The International Coalition of Library Consortia (ICOLC) has updated and reissued its "Statement on the Global Economic Crisis and Its Impact on Consortial Licenses."

                    Here's an excerpt:

                    The ICOLC is reissuing its Statement on the Global Economic Crisis to update information providers on the state of library and library consortia budgets in 2010. The updates below reinforce the ICOLC Statement in three substantial ways.

                    1. ICOLC did not overestimate the severity of cuts to library and library consortia funding levels in its original Statement. Furthermore, we believe the worst may still be before us, as US state governments suffer the loss of stimulus funds and continued weak regional economies. All parts of the world are facing negative economic repercussions from the European debt crisis. The need for pricing restraint and options remains paramount.
                    2. Fifty ICOLC member groups from around the world have participated in an anonymous survey to measure 2009 to 2010 price changes from over 30 major vendors and publishers of electronic databases and journals. This survey reveals that 38% of the price changes provided price control in the form of 1% increases or less. Seven percent (7%) of the price changes provided price reductions. We wish to commend those suppliers who have worked with libraries and consortia to contain prices. However, significant room for improvement remains. Some suppliers have done a much better job of containing prices than others. We call upon the full range of suppliers to show price restraint in 2010-2011 to enable customers to sustain as many information resource licenses as possible.
                    3. We take this opportunity to highlight the added potential negative impact of exclusivity on prices, as well as access. A new Principle 3 on page 3 of this document expresses the strongly held belief of ICOLC members that, over the long-term, multiple distribution channels for licensed content provide the most affordable and suitable options for access across diverse library communities.
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                      "Seeking the New Normal: Periodicals Price Survey 2010"

                      Posted in Libraries, Publishing, Scholarly Journals, Serials Crisis on April 15th, 2010

                      Kittie S. Henderson & Stephen Bosch have published "Seeking the New Normal: Periodicals Price Survey 2010" in Library Journal.

                      Here's an excerpt:

                      A number of publishers upped prices for 2010. Springer announced a five percent increase. Elsevier price increases are also in the five percent range, with the notable exception of The Lancet. The 2010 price for The Lancet jumped nine percent over 2009 levels; that increase was still smaller than in previous years. In October, the library world reeled as Nature Publishing Group (NPG) announced a 640 percent price increase (from $39.95 in 2009 to $299 in 2010) for a print subscription to Scientific American. The cost for the digital site license also rose substantially, and a number of consortia, like the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) and the Oberlin Group, refused to renew. The announcement came only weeks after NPG bought the magazine.

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                        Canadian Research Knowledge Network Completes License Agreements Worth $140 Million

                        Posted in ERM/Discovery Systems, Licenses, Serials Crisis on January 18th, 2010

                        The Canadian Research Knowledge Network, which has 73 academic institutions as members, has completed three-year license agreements worth $140 million with 14 scholarly publishers. It is estimated that over $40 million was saved compared to institutional licenses for comparable content.

                        Here's an excerpt from the press release:

                        Despite major financial constraints and uncertainty worldwide, CRKN continues to meet its goals of providing high-impact content for over 850,000 university researchers and students across the country. “This achievement signals CRKN’s contribution to a fertile research environment in Canada, and ability to maintain advantageous terms and price predictability in spite of turbulent economic conditions,” states Deb deBruijn, Executive Director. “Through strong arrangements with vendors, member participation in these national agreements has been largely maintained from the previous period, and has even grown on some agreements, across all sizes of universities.” Please refer to the Backgrounder for publishers, products and participation levels.

                        CRKN members have taken advantage of new flexibility offered in the renewal as multiple agreements have been unbundled by CRKN, allowing members to tailor their participation in each separate agreement. Members’ return on investment is high through these agreements. A conservative estimate reflects savings of between 15% to over 50% within the national agreements compared to institutional prices for comparable content, representing savings of over $40 million over a three-year period. In addition, members derive value through superior price protection with caps on annual increases set below market norm, expanded usage terms through the CRKN model license agreement, and the most strategic influence with publishers regarding future services and developments. . . .

                        In keeping with the International Coalition of Library Consortia (ICOLC) Statement on the Global Economic Crisis and its Impact on Consortial Licenses, CRKN seeks to work with strategic partners that demonstrate flexibility, competitive pricing models, and delivery of long-term value. Vendors with whom CRKN works have shown their commitment to members by providing flexible payment terms, making cost containment a priority, and developing forward-looking ways to add value to the relationship. For example, several vendors will now provide support for Shibboleth, an open-source implementation for identity-based authentication and authorization, and will also participate in the recently-implemented Canadian Access Federation, which will provide federated access management services for identity providers (including universities and libraries) and service providers (such as publishers).

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