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Ebooks account for a growing proportion of book budgets as libraries move from print to electronic collections, according to a recent survey on academic budget trends.* In fact, 80% of respondents reported ebook budgets are increasing or staying the same, while 88% of them reported flat or decreasing print book budgets.
The challenge is in making sure every dollar in your book budget is spent in a way to maximize the value of your library. It can be a challenging endeavor, compounded by the increasing scrutiny of that spending – libraries are telling us that they are being evaluated on outcomes and measures of use.
Books (and book budgets) are in trouble if shelves – even virtual ones! – are filled with books that don’t see use, at the expense of books that would get used.
The top reason given for the increase in ebook budgets is the shift from print to ebook collections. That makes sense. More and more, students demand and expect the availability of diverse online resources – including newly published materials as well as tried and true backlist titles and references. Plus, ebook collections save physical space in increasingly crowded library stacks and researcher backpacks.
Additionally, some libraries said their Demand-Driven Acquisition (DDA) programs contributed to budget increases. This usage-based purchasing enables libraries to demonstrate a return on investment. These numbers empower libraries to leverage increased ebook budget support.
Well, that depends on the needs of your library, your patrons, and your budget.
What outcome equals success at your institution?
What staffing challenges do you have?
What do you consider core content?
What are your users’ needs (students and faculty)?
What is your need for backlist vs frontlist titles?
Fortunately, you don’t have to use just one acquisition model – you can pick and choose among the options to create a comprehensive acquisition strategy that works best for you.
70% of libraries rely on multiple acquisition models for ebooks, with 15% relying on four or more models. Maintaining this mix helps libraries to make the most of their collection development budget and best meet researcher needs.
Perpetual Access: Buy and own individual titles or pre-selected packs of titles
Subscription: Offers a base ebook collection with simultaneous, multi-user access and continued growth
Demand Driven Acquisition (DDA): Provide access to a large number of ebooks and only purchase those used by patrons
Short Term Loan: Offers a wide range of titles without having to purchase the entire book
Access-to-Own: NEW! Facilitates title ownership by applying dollars spent on rentals to perpetual purchases
- Access-to-Own (ATO), which debuted on Ebook Central this week, is the one DDA method where all spend contributes towards ownership. Balances access with ownership and applies all loan spend to perpetual purchases
- Helps libraries control budgets and ties purchase expenditures to usage
- Provides researchers and students with the diverse frontlist and backlist content they need
When a researcher triggers a purchase via a DDA program, libraries can leverage Access-to-Own, a Short-Term Loan, or buy the title via Perpetual Access. Access-to-Own is ideal for research institutions and academic libraries who want to use usage-based purchasing to secure frontlist (and backlist) content and prefer to spend collection funds on ownership rather than access.
In the development of Access-to-Own, ProQuest collaborated with libraries and publishers around the world to create a new solution that supports libraries and publishers in building a sustainable ebook landscape.
Read the news release to learn more about Access-to-Own.
*Academic Library Book Purchasing Trends sponsored by ProQuest; a global survey conducted with 460 academic librarians. January 2016. Download here: http://go.proquest.com/acquisition-whitepaper