2019-20 Subscription Review FAQ

2019-20 Subscription Review FAQ

Who is the Subscription Task Force?

The Subscription Task Force was appointed by the Dean of Libraries. It is chaired by Western Libraries Director of Collections Madeline Kelly, and includes three Libraries personnel (Kate Cabe, Jeff Purdue, and Michelle Weston) and three faculty from across the university (Tilmann Glimm, CSE; Mark Neff, Huxley; Rae Lynn Schwartz-DuPre, CHSS).

How was the current subscription reduction process developed?

Have interlibrary loan (ILL) costs been factored in to the subscription review?

How was the draft cancellation list generated?

Why are there so many STEM titles on the list?

Can you tell me more about the qualitative criteria?

Is the task force proposing to cancel two-thirds of the library’s subscriptions (250 of 400+ subscriptions)?

How can we produce innovative scholarship, research, and creative activity without access to current published research and databases?

Why does the Libraries make changes to Western’s subscriptions?

What scholarly resources are eligible for cancellation this year?

What about subscriptions that were purchased using decision package funds?

How does the library get usage statistics?

How is three-year cost-per-use (CPU) calculated?

Are there alternatives for access to canceled journals, other than interlibrary loan?

Will I have a chance to provide feedback before a resource is cancelled?

If I use a journal regularly in one of my classes, will the Libraries keep it?

Will the Libraries be budgeting any less for books?

Can I suggest a new subscription?

How can Western faculty support sustainable scholarly communication?

Open Forum FAQ:

As part of the 2019-2020 Subscriptions Review process, Western Libraries and the Subscription Task Force hosted two open forum presentation sessions in order to provide answers to questions and to hear feedback and concerns. These forums were held on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 and Thursday, February 27, 2020 at 4pm in Haggard Hall room 253. These sessions were also available remotely via Zoom. We want to thank everyone who participated in these forums and by way of follow-up, share some of the key questions and concerns that we heard, along with our answers and explanations.

Why is this subscription review and reduction happening now? Didn’t we do this a few years ago? Will this continue to happen?

Why are there not enough funds to support subscriptions? If the university changed its funding practices and increased the Western Libraries collections budget, would this solve the problem so that we would never have to make cuts again?

What is the current long-term subscription management strategy in the face of the current scholarly publishing landscape?

We feel like having to prioritize the proposed cancellation list on a departmental level is difficult and divisive. What happens if we choose not to participate in this process? Can’t you just say no to cutting any subscriptions?

What are faculty, staff and students supposed to do if the article they need is no longer available via library subscription? How will their research and scholarship needs be met?

How can faculty members help with raising awareness about these issues?