In contrast to paper journal acquisitions, libraries in Korea have obtained collective bargaining power in purchasing electronic journals by forming a strong consortium named the Korea Electronic Site License Initiative (KESLI). KESLI is an epoch‐making programme developed in Korea as an attempt to greatly expand the availability of foreign scholarly information by consortia‐based purchasing of site licences of electronic journals from publishers and information providers. KESLI operates under the National Digital Science Library (NDSL) project, the purpose of which is to build a national digital library providing a one‐click total gateway to foreign scholarly information. This paper aims to describe KESLI and examine its significance for scholarly libraries in Korea.
The paper provides a descriptive analysis of KESLI.
The paper finds that some 400 KESLI members as of the end of June 2005 have voluntarily formed as many sub‐consortia by publishers as they wish to join, thus enhancing the use levels of scholarly information to six times higher on average than before. NDSL services, launched on 16 May 2001, enable patrons from KESLI member institutions to download, at a single interface from their desktops, all the licensed electronic journals provided by various publishers/vendors.
This paper's description of KESLI may allow further analysis of the value of collective site licensing for electronic journals and help other potential consortia to develop their own licensing system.
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