CARL Members Release Journal Subscription Cost Data for 2017-2018 and 2018-2019

October 2, 2019 – Following up on a first release last year, university library members of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) have released their expenditure data for journal and database subscriptions licensed through the Canadian Research Knowledge Network consortium. This release covers subscription costs for 2017-2018 and 2018-2019.

Back in May 2018, CARL members jointly released for the first time their journal subscription cost data for the 2016-2017 period. These institutions have decided to continue this practice with the release of a further two years’ data, in line with their commitment to greater transparency of licensing information.

Jonathan Bengtson, CARL President, remarked, “Continuing this practice is important, as we are seeing significant shifts toward open access internationally. Achieving transparency in terms of how much research libraries are paying for both traditional and transformative agreements is essential for assessing the true cost of publishing. This is a key datapoint as the Academy moves toward new, robust methods of research dissemination for the good of society.”

The datasets and associated summary tables have been released detailing expenditure costs of all CARL member university libraries for their subscriptions for 2017-2018 and 2018-2019. The data is not comprehensive of all their licensed subscriptions.

Click to access 2017-2018 data set

Click to access 2018-2019 data set

Important considerations to interpreting the data


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CARL members include Canada’s twenty-nine largest university libraries as well as two national libraries. Enhancing research and higher education are at the heart of its mission. CARL develops the capacity to support this mission, promotes effective and sustainable scholarly communication, and public policy that enables broad access to scholarly information.

For more information, please contact:

Susan Haigh

Executive Director
Canadian Association of Research Libraries
(613) 482-9344 ext. 101