The W. K. Kellogg Health Sciences Library has determined that it has a significant collections budget shortfall for 2015/16. Reducing book purchases and spending endowment funds will help reduce the shortfall but additional cancellations are also required. The following items will be cancelled in the New Year but much of the material will be available through other Dalhousie subscriptions or through free Document Delivery.
|Subscriptions to be cancelled||Continuing alternate access|
|Nursing and Allied Health Database||CINAHL and other databases|
|Elsevier Clinics||Clinical Key|
|Springer Protocols||Access will remain for pre-2016 content|
|Karger Journals||Request newer content through Document Delivery|
|Karger eBook Series Collection||Request through Document Delivery|
Why is there a budget shortfall at the Kellogg Library?
This year the Libraries collections budget increased by 1.9% and money was provided to offset some of the effect of the 2014/15 US dollar exchange rate. In addition to its portion of the Libraries’ collection budget, the Kellogg Library receives funds from other sources to help cover the costs of some programs. In general, the amount of these additional funds has decreased.
Roughly 85% of Kellogg library materials are paid for in US dollars. The Canadian dollar has declined significantly this year. In May, a $10,000 US subscription was worth $12,200 Canadian. Today, that subscription will cost $13,360, a 9.5% increase.
The Libraries are diligent and negotiate the lowest possible increases, but vendors are increasing prices anywhere from 1% to 8% per year. These vendor increases significantly inflate costs over time: a subscription that cost $50,000 USD in 2010 and increased 5% annually will cost $64,000 USD this year.
Will there be further cancellations?
When inflation combines with a weak Canadian dollar, university libraries face very difficult choices. Across the country, libraries are making cuts to stay within their budgets. Most recently Memorial University announced cuts, but many others have made similar announcements, including British Columbia, Brock, Ottawa, Queen’s, Ryerson, Simon Fraser, and Western.
We monitor spending closely and make adjustments throughout the year. We work to minimize the impact on student learning and faculty research, but journal and database subscription cancellations are increasingly common and are likely to continue.
Deciding what to retain and what to cancel is a complex balancing act. To help ensure that we make the best choice in the circumstances, the Kellogg librarians will be discussing collection changes with their departments throughout 2016 and 2017.
Alternate access to cancelled material
Despite these cancellations, the Libraries continue to provide a large collection of journals (110,000) and books (1.5 million) to support learning, teaching and research.
When a subscription is cancelled, the content is often available in another database and we often retain access to previously purchased materials.
Patrick Ellis, Associate University Librarian, Resources and Head, W.K. Kellogg Health Sciences Library