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Elsevier journals status update

TO:       UC Davis Academic Community
FROM:  MacKenzie Smith, University Librarian and Vice Provost of Digital Scholarship
Dennis J. Ventry, Jr., Professor of Law and Chair, Academic Senate University Committee on Library and Scholarly Communication
RE:        Elsevier journals status update

 

As you may know, the University of California has been out of contract with Elsevier since January. We are writing to provide a brief status update as the academic year gets underway.

Background

Elsevier discontinued UC’s access to 2019 articles via the ScienceDirect online platform, and older articles in certain journals, following a breakdown in contract negotiations between UC and Elsevier earlier this year. In those negotiations, UC sought to contain journal subscription costs while providing for immediate and perpetual open access to UC research — a goal that supports UC’s mission as a public university to facilitate free and open access to knowledge. These overarching goals were forged collaboratively by the Academic Senate and the UC Libraries, and continue to have widespread support from the leadership of the university, including President Napolitano, and its faculty.

Status

UC remains out of contract with Elsevier and is not actively negotiating for a new one while we monitor the impact of the situation on UC’s community of researchers and students. That information will inform whether and when to re-engage in formal negotiations with Elsevier. At UC Davis, we are tracking interlibrary loan requests for Elsevier articles and emails to elsevierquestions@ucdavis.edu, and are exploring a researcher survey for later this quarter.

Reminder: Getting Elsevier articles you need

To get access to Elsevier articles no longer available via ScienceDirect, you have several options:

  • Search online using tools like Google Scholar, Unpaywall and Open Access Button to see if an open access copy is available.
  • Email the corresponding author listed in the abstract to request a copy.
  • Get it from the library by placing an interlibrary loan request (for URGENT requests, please use the Note field to ask for an expedited copy). The library has implemented new, faster systems to support interlibrary loan on evenings and weekends, and to deliver requested articles within one business day, or even within a few hours.
  • Contact our Interlibrary Loan staff at hslborrow@ucdavis.edu or 530-752-1978 so we can best meet your needs.

We do our best to ensure that you have access to the articles you need. Meanwhile, the systemwide Academic Senate has encouraged stakeholders across UC to use the methods above to access needed articles, and to refrain from any new independent subscriptions to Elsevier journals. “By ‘holding the line,’” the Senate leadership wrote, “the UC can help change the system of scholarly communication for the betterment of all.”

We want to hear from you

For the latest information, please visit our UC/Elsevier webpage or subscribe to our email list for updates on this topic. If you have any questions or need help accessing an article, please don’t hesitate to email the library at any time.

 

MacKenzie Smith, University Librarian and Vice Provost of Digital Scholarship

Dennis J. Ventry, Jr., Professor of Law and Chair, Academic Senate University Committee on Library and Scholarly Communication