Supplementary evidence from the Cambridge
1. What proportion of the publishers from
whom you purchase digital content would refuse you access to the
back issues you had previously subscribed to if you cancelled
your digital subscription? Which publishers have this policy?
Some major publishers (eg Nature Publishing
Group and Springer Verlag) do not seem to make any provision that
we can identify.
The biological societies who publish journals
via HighWire Press, which make up a substantial part of the more
important biological journal literature, do not include access
to subscribed material after cancellation, but most of them make
all their material open access after a period of 6 or 12 months.
Many of the larger suppliers make some provision
for continuing access to subscribed material after cancellation,
either from the publisher's own server, or via a third party's
server, or by providing files direct to the University for us
to store, though in a number of cases an additional fee is payable.
Those who do make some provision for archival
American Chemical Society
American Institute of Physics
Elsevier (position on fee unclear)
Institute of Physics (fee)
Institution of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
2. What proportion of your library's costs
are spent on overheads?
The use of the term "overheads" to
mean everything other than books, journals and other library materials
[definition confirmed by the Secretariat] is a misleading one.
Whilst the provision of materials for readers' use is the single
most important role of a university library, the library also
provides many other services that cannot simply be described as
overheads. Libraries have been in the forefront of the exploitation
of technology for the last twenty years and this has enabled them
to increase their efficiency enormously, but such services are
generally expensive because they are by their very nature labour
intensive, as many involve direct contact with users. They include:
the work essential to selecting,
acquiring, cataloguing, negotiating licences and making available
to readers the books, journals and electronic resources they need;
assistance to users of the collections,
in the form of direct help across the desk, web-based support,
e-mail help-desks, and training sessions for users at all levels
from undergraduate to research professor;
the provision of borrowing, photocopying
and other imaging services, document delivery between libraries,
management of the collectionsthe
provision of adequate storage facilities, preservation and repair;
and growing use of digital storage; without these the materials
will not be available for future generations.
For Cambridge University Library the proportions
|Other (stationery, telephones etc):||8%
It should be noted that the impact at Cambridge of legal
deposit means that much material is acquired without payment to
the publisher but at considerable cost in terms of processing.
This increases the proportion of the budget spent on staff and
reduces that spent on materials.
3. Does your university have an institutional repository
in which academics can archive their research papers?/Does it
have any plans to establish one? Does it have a view on such repositories?
Cambridge University Library has established an institutional
repository, in collaboration with MIT, through the Cambridge-MIT
Institute (http://www.lib.cam.ac.uk/dspace/). This repository
uses "DSpace", an open-source digital-repository system.
It will provide a home for scholarly communications (articles
and pre-prints), theses, and technical reports, as well as teaching
programmes, data sets and databases. It also has the ability to
capture, index, store, disseminate and preserve digital materials
created in any part of the University, whether for research, teaching
or the support of lifelong learning, such as digitised images
of materials from the University's collections of manuscripts,
books, and museum objects.
The University takes the view that institutional repositories
can play a vital part in disseminating and preserving scientific
research. Each such repository provides the research community
with an effective means of self-archiving both research papers
and the associated raw scientific data; institutional ownership
provides assurances that the repository's contents will be preserved
and openly accessible in the long term; and the use of agreed
international standards of inter-operability ensures that the
content of multiple repositories can be cross-searched to provide
optimal retrieval of relevant material. For such repositories
to operate effectively, it is important that the academics creating
the material in the first place do not sign over the copyright
on an exclusive basis to one publisher.
The University Library is a member of the SHERPA consortium,
which aims to initiate the development of openly accessible institutional
digital repositories of research output in a number of research
universities, and through the CMI-funded project LEADIRS, it is
assisting other institutions in the development of individual
institutional level planning for the implementation of sustainable
I am grateful for the opportunity to make a final closing
statement but do not think that there is anything I would wish
to say beyond what was in our initial submission and what was
said in answer to the oral questions on 21 April.
However, the urgency of moving ahead in trying to resolve
some of the issues that the Committee have been grappling with
is underlined by information that I have received in the last
few days from one university library that Nature has announced
a 70% increase in its prices for electronic access to the Nature
bundle of journals, when that library's subscriptions come up
for renewal next month!