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Canadian Research Knowledge Network Negotiates Renewal with Elsevier

After nearly a year of negotiations, the Canadian Research Knowledge Network (CRKN), a consortium of Canada’s university libraries, has struck a deal with Elsevier ScienceDirect, to reduce costs, increase open access, and ensure the transparency of their agreement. “We are fortunate to benefit from the collective negotiations strength of CRKN and a robust strategy that has driven substantial and positive outcomes. Given the financial challenges so many universities are facing as a result of the pandemic, the benefits are considerable,” said Rebecca Graham, university librarian.

What this means for CRKN members, including the University of Guelph Library, is substantial:

  • A cost reduction of 12.5 per cent for 2021, followed by a 0 per cent change in 2022, and a 2 per cent increase in 2023.
  • A 20 percent discount on Article Processing Charges for both hybrid and gold open access journals, with a few exclusions.
  • No non-disclosure clause within the Elsevier agreement so we can publicly share its terms.

Elsevier is the U of G Library’s largest license, so this reduction has a significant impact on the library’s bottom line, playing a major role considering the elimination of an annual inflationary increase for the information resources budget. “This was a critical negotiation for U of G. Elsevier is our largest licensing cost – about 10 per cent of our journals budget – so any movement in this cost has serious ramifications for our budget,” said Ian Gibson, head, Collections & Content.

“This landmark result combined with other successful negotiations over the past year means that we will have some flexibility in meeting the needs of our community going forward,” said Gibson.

Read the full CRKN Press Release.