Get expert advice to help you get published!

You are here

South Korean universities renew deal with Elsevier, say they are unhappy with prices

Sneha Kulkarni | Jan 19, 2018 | 3,569 views
South Korean universities renew deal with Elsevier, say they are unhappy with prices

A consortium of 300 South Korean universities and college libraries has reached an agreement with publishing giant Elsevier after long negotiations and a series of disagreements. The price hike to access ScienceDirect (Elsevier’s database comprising 3500 academic journals and several electronic books) was the underlying reason for the disagreements. Although Elsevier continued to provide access to ScienceDirect during the negotiations with the South Korean institutions, it threatened to discontinue access as talks prolonged. Ultimately, a price hike in the range of 3.5% and 3.9% was agreed upon.  

South Korean universities typically renew their contracts with Elsevier in December. However, last year the publishing company decided to hike the price by 4.9% to which the consortium took a hard line. “We can no longer afford [Elsevier’s] excessive demands,” said Hwang In Sung, research analysis team director at the Korean Council for University Education (KCUE). Library budgets are tight in South Korea and ScienceDirect takes up the largest bite out of libraries’ annual budget, according to the consortium.

Apart from the proposed hike rate, the consortium also resisted the mandatory inclusion of journals that are of no relevance to these universities as part of ScienceDirect’s package deal. Lee Chang Won, secretary general of the Korea University & College Library Association, said "We want Elsevier to abolish the minimum flat rate system, in which our universities have to pay for digital content that nobody reads."   

As per the negotiations, both sides agreed upon a subscription hike between the range of 3.5% and 3.9%. Thus, South Korean universities have the option to choose from these rates: one-year renewal at an increase of 3.9%, or a three-year contract with an increase of 3.5%, 3.6%, and 3.7% respectively above the baseline. The consortium has clarified that it is not completely satisfied with the newer rates as well. “We know our negotiated [increase] of 3.5% to 3.9% with Elsevier is above the international level of 2%," said Hwang In Sun. However, the consortium had to concede to Elsevier’s demands because access to ScienceDirect is vital for South Korean academics.

Affording access to Elsevier journals has become increasingly difficult for countries all over the world owing to the publisher’s high pricing. South Korean institutions are looking for better pricing for ScienceDirect in the next year and will continue to discuss pricing with the publishing giant.

 

Related reading:

Serials crisis hits National Taiwan University, Elsevier journal subscriptions to be discontinued

German institutions push Elsevier for a fair deal in order to access paywalled research

Over 60 German institutions to lose access to Elsevier journals    

 

References:

South Korean Universities Make Deal with Elsevier

South Korean universities reach agreement with Elsevier after long standoff

Republish

Like this article? Republish it!
Knowledge should be open to all. We encourage our viewers to republish articles, online or in print. Our Creative Commons license allows you to do so for free. We only ask you to follow a few simple guidelines:
  • Attribution: Remember to attribute our authors. They spend a lot of time and effort in creating this content for you.
  • Editage Insights: Include an attribution to Editage Insights as the original source.
  • Consider a teaser: Yes, that’s what we call it…a teaser. You could include a few lines of this post and say “Read the whole article on Editage Insights”. Don’t forget to add the link to the article.
  • Re-using images: Re-publishing some of the images from our articles may need prior permission from or credit to the original image source.
  • Quick and easy embed code: The simplest way to share this article on your webpage would be to embed the code below.

 

Please copy the above code and embed it onto your website to republish.
Download free ebooks, guides and templates.
Editage Insights offers a wealth of free resources on academic research and publishing. Sign up and get complete access to a vibrant global community of 179k researchers.
By clicking 'Join Now', you agree to our Terms & Privacy Policy.
Having trouble registering/logging in? Contact us
Q & A

Have your own question?

Related Categories