Resource Reduction Report

Relevant Documents

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Resource Reduction Report

Subscriptions Review & Cancellation Process- Spring 2016 Update

Western is preparing for reductions in expenditures of $315,000 to its Fiscal Year 2016-2017 library resource access budget. An initial list of approximately 3,600 current subscriptions proposed for cancellation is available for University review.
Western faces continued and significant budget shortfalls to pay for current library resources. The anticipated deficits are primarily the result of escalating journal and database prices, compounded at an average of 6% annually.
In this context, Academic Affairs and the Faculty Senate engaged the Senate Library Committee to seek solutions. In Fall Quarter 2015, the Committee convened the Sustainable Access Task Force (SATF) and prepared a report to determine principles, criteria, and processes for reducing expenditures on library resources.

Subscriptions Cancellation Process

Western Libraries has applied the SATF’s criteria and formula to produce a list of titles for cancellation. The Task Force's charge, its report, and the spreadsheet of titles for proposed cancellation are available in the sidebar of this page.
  • The SATF report permits an academic department to request that a title on the proposed cancellation list be considered for retention based upon defensible criteria as described in the report’s fourth general principle.
  • Department chairs should coordinate all requests within the department and submit a single, department-approved list of titles, with justifications, to Collections Services (, no later than Friday, April 29, at 5:00 p.m. Retention requests submitted after that date will not be considered. Western Libraries is not able to consider requests from individual faculty.
  • After April 29, Western Libraries faculty will meet to review all department retention requests. In the event that total retention requests exceed the 15% buffer described in the SATF’s cancellation formula, Western Libraries faculty will collectively analyze and prioritize the retention requests based upon the defensible criteria submitted by each department chair.
  • Western Libraries will publish on its web site a final list of cancellations and a description of the process and criteria the faculty used in prioritizing the department retention requests by Friday, May 20, at 5:00 p.m. Cancellations will take effect in the 2017 calendar year.


Data Fields Included on the List of Proposed Cancellations

Call # - Call numbers follow Library of Congress classifications ( Because electronic journal titles do not have Library of Congress call numbers, Libraries' staff have entered this information manually to the extent that it was possible.
Title - Titles represent current subscriptions.
ISSN - International Standard Serial Number. An ISSN is an 8-digit code used to identify print and electronic newspapers, databases, journals, magazines and periodicals.
2016 Cost – Price of the smallest purchasable unit as defined by the vendor.
Note: The SATF calls upon the Libraries to identify titles at the smallest purchasable unit. The report further recommends that any journal package that can be broken and its titles purchased individually should be considered and priced as single resources (smallest purchasable units). Package pricing offers the University considerable cost savings for the bundle of titles contained within that package. When titles are purchased individually, the total cost is considerably more than the package price. The cost in column D reflects vendor pricing if the University were to cancel the entire package and instead purchase a title individually. 
2013-2015 Total Use – Total number of uses (e.g., article views or performed searches) over the past three calendar years: 2013, 2014, 2015.
Note: print newspaper subscriptions do not have usage data because there is no way to track use for them.
3-Year CPU – As defined in the SATF report, CPU (Cost Per Use) is determined by: Cost (a title’s 2016 unit price) multiplied by 3, then divided by Use (total number of uses over the past three years). Full-text journals and databases are weighted differently.  Specifically, the SATF recommended a multiplier of five when calculating CPU for databases in order to reduce loss of access to this form of content. 
Access covered by other full-text databases - Access to titles provided by other full-text databases, including years of coverage and embargo periods.
Format - 
  • package: collection of online journal subscriptions only available as a bundle from the vendor
  • package title: titles currently part of a bundled package but available for individual purchase
  • print: non-package print journal
  • online: non-package online journal
  • print + online: non-package journal only available as a combined print + online purchase
  • databases: includes data sets, abstracts, citations, and full-text/full-content
  • microfilm: only active microfilm subscription is the Bellingham Herald
  • print newspapers: non-package print newspapers