The Libraries’ collections budget allocation from the University has been static since 2003. However, the inflation rate for journals and other subscriptions has ranged from 4% to 15% and even higher. Because 80% of the collections budget goes to serials and other ongoing costs, this means that our purchasing power declines every year. . Although we canceled serials in FY17, we have once again maximized our ability to cover ongoing serials inflation with our existing budget. Therefore, we are canceling the Taylor and Francis package effective January 2018.
The Libraries collect and analyze robust data about use, pricing and cost per use of our serials subscriptions. Subject librarians used this data and other information to make decisions about possible cancelations. In addition to data about cost and use, subject specialists also evaluated each journal based on other criteria, including its relative importance to an academic discipline, whether its content is available from another source such as one of the Libraries’ research databases, and if the Libraries can obtain the title through interlibrary loan or one of our consortial partnerships.
The Libraries will begin processing renewals of those Taylor and Francis titles to be retained in December 2017. Subscriptions to the entire Taylor and Francis package will end effective December 31, 2017.
We have a robust interlibrary loan program through which faculty and students can gain access to materials beyond our collections. This can mitigate some of the effects of journal cancelations. You can find information about interlibrary loan and other resources for accessing content beyond the University of Maryland at http://www.lib.umd.edu/access/ill.
Library collections are only one of our costs. The best library collection is of little value without expert personnel to acquire, describe, maintain, and make accessible our collections. These services require a highly trained professional staff as well as the technology and facilities necessary to offer our services. The Libraries have already made significant cuts in other areas. We have lost personnel positions, postponed or canceled facilities renovations, and reduced other costs as much as possible.
For more information about the serials review please contact one of the Libraries’ subject specialists (you can find a list at http://www.lib.umd.edu/directory/specialists) or to Daniel Mack, Associate Dean, Collection Strategies and Services, at firstname.lastname@example.org.