Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Saturday, February 23, 2008

More on the pricing crisis

Liz O'Brien, Library struggles to keep up with journal demand, The Santa Clara (student newspaper at Santa Clara University), February 21, 2008.  (Thanks to LIS News.)  Excerpt:

...In the last six years, the deficit between the library's operating budget and the scope of journals, books and databases available has been steadily increasing, said Taeock Kim, associate university librarian. In other words, the library's budget can't keep up with the number of new journals available.

"The gap is getting bigger every year, so we have to be really careful in what we purchase," said Kim....

Since 2001 alone, when the university subscribed to 5,168 journals, subscriptions have decreased by 1,335, said Aimee Algier, head of technical services....

"Faculty need greater library facilities that Santa Clara can't provide," said history professor Steven Gelber. "It's always been the case, but my sense is that it's getting worse because the amount of material available in libraries is growing exponentially and the university can't keep up."

Much of that inability to keep up stems from the high inflation rates of journals and databases....

As long as prices increase at a much faster rate than the library's budget, it is unlikely there will be any new journal purchases.

"We're falling behind by standing still," Gelbert said.