Article: Evidence Provides More Options for E-Book Acquisition
The early business model was very straightforward – collections of e-books were packaged as a dataset which meant that “must have” content was easily accessible. Key resources such as Oxford Reference Online, Literature Online, EEBO, The Shakespeare Collection and Grove Music Online work well in this format. But once the budget has been spent on core collections it becomes a real struggle for libraries to prioritise e-book acquisition decisions.
There are so many unknowns and variables, but interesting things are happening now. For instance Jisc Collections has just reached an agreement with Alexander Street Press, offering its streamed video content via a really interesting EBA model. The Scottish Higher Education Digital Library (SHEDL) has pioneered EBA and has much to teach the sector about its potential, for other closed consortia that want to do something similar.
SHEDL’s experience shows that libraries and purchasing groups find that EBA offers an affordable and reliable way to start building e-collections that clearly reflect the needs of their users. The books that get used (and therefore purchased) are likely to map very closely to course requirements, so it’s extremely practical. And for library users it opens up the prospect of a very rich vein of content being available to explore during the course of the contract.
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com. Gary is also the co-founder of infoDJ an innovation research consultancy supporting corporate product and business model teams with just-in-time fact and insight finding.