Re: Survey: How many refereed journals can your library NOT afford?

From: Stevan Harnad <harnad_at_COGPRINTS.SOTON.AC.UK>
Date: Mon, 15 Jan 2001 23:39:02 +0000

I must refer Paul Gherman's well-meaning response to the exchange with
Andrew Odlyzko that has just appeared in this Forum, concerning the
realistic way to estimate untrammeled click-access to the entire
relevant full-text corpus for all researchers. -- S. H.

----------------- Original message (ID=21658C65) (66 lines) -------------------
Date: Mon, 15 Jan 2001 16:32:01 -0600
From: "Paul M. Gherman" <>
Subject: Re: Survey: How many refereed journals can your library NOT afford?
To: September 1998 American Scientist Forum


Although no faculty member as "easy" access to every
article in their field, some of today's libraries come very
close to providing just that. Vanderbilt subscribes to a
significant number of article databases like Science
Direct and ProQuest that provide hundreds of thousands
of articles. If these services do not have the necessary
article, we then go to the document delivery services like
UnCover. And if UnCover does not have it, we turn to
interlibrary loan. Most libraries are finding that the use of
ILL is growing at double digit levels and has been for a
decade. So yes, we do not subscribe to everything, but
for some of our faculty, almost everything is attainable
one way or another.

Publishers are moving away from individual subscriptions,
and are offering access to article databases instead
because they recognize and libraries recognize that we
do not necessarily subscribe to just the journals our
faculty want. We were part of U of Michigan's PEAK
experiment, and we found that our faculty used just as
many articles from the Elsevier journals we did not
subscribe to as the ones we did subscribe to when they
were given access to everything. So Science Direct made
sense. (This behavior supports your argument too.)

I understand you interest in finding out the data, but I do
not think it is easily gathered. ARL has a great deal of
data that may be of help to you however.

Paul M. Gherman
University Librarian
611B General Library
419 21st Avenue South
Vanderbilt University
Nashville, TN 37240
Office: (615) 322-7120
Fax: (615) 343-8279
Received on Wed Jan 03 2001 - 19:17:43 GMT

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