Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited
With this issue, David Majka of the Robert Morris College Library joins us with an opinion piece that I believe provides a consciousness raising framework for the aspects related to many key financial issues confronting librarians today. While our library patrons continue to demonstrate interest or demand access to on-line formats to information, we are at the crossroads of what we can afford to purchase without completely changing what else we are able to provide. David's piece will hopefully begin an on-going discussion in the next issues about how to both qualify and quantify our library services within the context of our financial frameworks.
As an expanded discussion to what is happening throughout libraries in regard to his posed questions, I would like to examine in an upcoming issue the costs associated with scholarly communication. In recent history, costs reached crisis proportions. Serial, print publications have escalated largely by an average of 9.5 per cent a year over the past decade (Case, 1998). These changes demand that we educate users and librarians at all institutions on scholarly communication issues. Every library manager must examine these changes occurring in the delivery of research information. As the model changes, what will it mean for all types of libraries (school, academic, public, and special) and the multi-type consortiums? Furthermore, what changes will take place for our library users? What suggestions can libraries offer as best practices within these pages?
The following are a series of case studies/research reports to be consulted, as a means of precipitating a profession-wide conversation on these financial issues and all related topics. I hope to hear from you soon.
And finally, we pay tribute to Jeanne Hurley Simon, chairwoman of the US National Commission for Libraries and Information Science since 1993, who passed away in February. For those fortunate enough to work with Mrs Simon, she engendered all we wish for in a library advocate. Her ability to define the issues and to see projects through completion was much admired in the library community. She was a paragon and she will be forever missed.
James H. WaltherEditor
ARL/AAU Pew Roundtable on Managing Intellectual Property in Higher Education, Policy Perspectives, Special Issue, March 1998. Co-sponsored by the Association of Research Libraries, the Association of American Universities and the Pew Higher Education Roundtable, http://www.arl.org/scomm/pew/
The Future of Scholarly Communication: A Proposal for Change Charles E. Phelps, Provost, University of Rochester http://www.econ.rochester.edu/Faculty/Phelps_paper.html
The Impact of Publisher Mergers on Journal Prices: A Preliminary Report, Mark J. McCabe, Assistant Professor of Economics, Georgia Institute of Technology, September, 1998 http://www.arl.org/newsltr/200/mccabe.html
On-Line Journals and Financial Fire-Walls, Stevan Harnad, Cognitive Sciences Center, Department of Electronics and Computer Science, Southampton University, Highfield, Southampton, Nature 395: 127-128. September 10 1998 http://www.cogsci.soton.ac.uk/~harnad/nature.html
The Role of Information Technology in the Life of the University: A University-Wide Conversation, The University of Virginia, http://www.virginia.edu/facultysenate/techconv2.htm
The Specialized Scholarly Monograph in Crisis or How Can I Get Tenure If You Won't Publish My Book?, Joint Publication by: American Council of Learned Societies, Association of American University Presses, Association of Research Libraries, http://www.arl.org/scomm/epub/program.html
Views of the Current Marketplace for Scholarly Journals, Mary Case, Association of Res3earch Libraries, Office of Scholarly Communication, http://www.arl.org/newsltr/200/200toc.html