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Update on Access to Elsevier Journals

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

 

The University of California has been out of contract with Elsevier since January, but thus far the publisher has continued to provide access to new articles via ScienceDirect. While Elsevier has not yet provided us with official notification, we have reason to believe that the publisher will shut off that direct access in the first half of July, after the July 4 holiday.

When that happens, we will no longer have direct access to 2019 articles (in all Elsevier journals) nor the backfiles of certain journals. Everything else will still be accessible on ScienceDirect. Once the shut off is confirmed, we will publish a notice on the library’s website.

Background

Last year, the University of California entered negotiations for a new agreement with Elsevier that would not only continue UC’s access to Elsevier’s online journals, but also achieve the faculty-supported goals of containing journal subscription costs and providing for open access publication of UC research. Unfortunately, in late February the negotiations stalled. In the months since, Elsevier has continued to provide access to new articles via ScienceDirect without a contract in place.

Other ways to access Elsevier articles

Information about other ways to access Elsevier articles is available on the library’s website and summarized below. To facilitate your access to affected articles, the library has also implemented new, faster systems to support interlibrary loan on evenings and weekends, and to deliver requested articles within one business day, and even within a few hours.

To access articles that are no longer available via ScienceDirect, you may also:

  • Use tools like Google Scholar, Unpaywall and Open Access Button to quickly find open access copies, which are free to read online, when available.
  • Email the corresponding author listed in the abstract to request a copy.
  • Use the interlibrary loan request form (for URGENT requests, please use the Note field to ask for an expedited copy).
  • Contact our Interlibrary Loan staff at hslborrow@ucdavis.edu or 530-752-1978 so we can best meet your needs. If you get stuck, we’re here to help.

Over the coming months, we will be carefully evaluating the impact of losing access to new articles on ScienceDirect, and we will do our best to ensure that you have access to the articles you need. Meanwhile, UC hopes to reenter formal negotiations with Elsevier when the publisher indicates that it is willing to discuss a contract that addresses our goals of cost containment and open access.

If you have any questions about the Elsevier negotiations, please don’t hesitate to contact the library at any time.

MacKenzie Smith, University Librarian and Vice Provost of Digital Scholarship

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