Re: Open Letter to Research Councils UK: Rebuttal of ALPSP Critique Albert Henderson 31 Aug 2005 12:51 UTC
on Fri, 26 Aug 2005 John Christensen <John_Christensen@BYU.EDU> wrote: > Albert Henderson's own credibility has for years been > suspect as he has worked for organizations in the pocket > of the "big money" publishers. I welcome the comment because I have no conflict of interest here. I am not in the pay of any publisher, nor do I own shares. Nor am I in the pay of any university or government agency. It has never been a secret that I worked for Walter J Johnson in the 1960s, Robert Maxwell in the 1970s, and consulted for many publishers in the 1980s. For the last decade and more I ran my own business, importing NEW IN CHESS MAGAZINE & YEARBOOK, a business from which I recently retired -- a business with little interest in research libraries. I have not had an active relationship with any learned publisher since 2000, when I left PUBLISHING RESEARCH QUARTERLY as pro bono editor after 6 years. My loyalty has always been first to the authors and the readers, then to the professional editors and librarians who deal with content. If you have read my voluminous writings, you will see I have criticized publishers as well as institutional bureaucrats and trustees. I was very offended by the university propaganda campaign aimed at blaming publishers and authors for massive serials cancellations and the decimation of once grand collections. That huge pack of lies, if anything, got me started. The data I used [below] is public and available to anyone who wishes to check my figures. If the facts are wrong, then LSU -- which reported them -- must accept the blame. Finally, the idea of fixed library costs while increasing sponsored research and other programs has been the holy grail of a grasping university management for some time. This is a flaw in the faustian bargain made by scholars who opened the doors to the Third Culture, one that has no care for Shakespeare or the 2nd law of thermodynamics. President Eisenhower pointed out the miguided nature of sponsored research in his farewell address. He would know, from his time as President of Columbia U. Best wishes, Albert Henderson Former Editor, PUBLISHING RESEARCH QUARTERLY 1994-2000 Contributor HIGHER EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES. AN ENCYCLOPEDIA (ABC-CLIO 2002) -----Original Message----- From: SERIALST: Serials in Libraries Discussion Forum [mailto:SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU] On Behalf Of Marsha M Aucoin Sent: Friday, August 26, 2005 1:24 PM To: SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU Subject: [SERIALST] Open Letter to Research Councils UK: Rebuttal of ALPSP Critique Sent on behalf of Jane Kleiner: Janellyn P Kleiner 08/26/2005 02:08 PM To: SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU cc: Jennifer Cargill Subject: Re: [SERIALST] Open Letter to Research Councils UK: Rebuttal of ALPSP Critique Response to Albert Henderson's comments on the LSU Libraries: Chuck Hammaker has already provided an accurate response to Henderson's attack on the LSU Libraries based on the circumstances at LSU a decade ago. As the lead author of the article Chuck cited and Associate Dean of Libraries, I feel compelled to update that information and offer my own response. In a nutshell, your information is inaccurate, dated, and a total misrepresentation of LSU and the Libraries then and now. The journal project in the early nineties was a cooperative one, supported by the University administration with faculty participation. We are an ARL library and LSU is a Carnegie Research Extensive University. Institutions are included in those groups based on hard data. In the past decade, Library support has increased substantially, nearly doubling. Today, we have more than 30,000 electronic journals, 300+ databases, and over 60,000 e-books plus more than 3 million volumes. LSU research funding exceeded $100,000,000 annually several years ago and totaled $132,886,000 in FY05. This represents substantial improvement for a state university with a relatively small population. In comparison with most flagship universities, LSU has fewer faculty, researchers, and students but that size has not diminished the progress we have made. Our research would not be growing as the rate it is if 'LSU financed its library appropriately for a voc-ag or trade school' as you stated in your message. In addition to our growing materials budget enriched by annual supplements of one-time monies, the University allocates a percentage of indirect cost monies to the Libraries. As LSU's sponsored research programs grow, so does our funding and this is not the only source of increased funding. Obviously, we have a supportive University administration and that support was recognized in that nineties' article. At the time of those cuts more than a decade ago, our strategies to contain serial expenditures were commended by more than one accreditation agency. Many ARL libraries, including at least one Ivy League, looked to us for assistance in implementing similar programs at their institutions.Our advice has also been sought internationally. Yes, we canceled numerous subscriptions but we also added new ones and expanded our electronic resources and access to other information sources. That article won an ALA award that year. Both, Chuck and I have had numerous invitations to speak at conferences and universities on our project. Obviously, it was an action plan that succeeded without alienating faculty or negatively impacting research and instruction. More insight into how to implement that plan was sought by other university libraries and other countries. The article was reprinted in the Chinese equivalent to College and Research Libraries. That suggests the project was not the disaster you claim. The grants the Libraries were awarded then and since have supported a statewide academic library network, library resources, and digital collections. In this area too, our advice has been sought on funding and building a statewide library network. LSU Libraries took the lead in these grant funded projects and the benefits to our library and other state academic institutions have been enormous. The network achieved funding from the state legislature when federal funding ended. It has been supported by the state for more than a decade funding online library systems and numerous databases. It covered network costs for a new ILS system, a federated search package, and a software application that links users directly to articles cited in their searches. The success of our grants and network programs enabled us to free funds to acquire costly electronic resources not possible a decade ago -- the Web of Knowledge, IEEE Xplore, SciFinder, JSTOR, ARTStor, and many others. We have not had to make significant cuts since that time. We continue assessing faculty needs and ridding the Libraries of titles not used while adding new journal subscriptions & databases that are in demand. There are no truths or facts in your message. I suggest that you refrain from commenting about our library and university since you have no connection with either and to my knowledge never have. Jane Kleiner Associate Dean of Libraries for Collection Services The LSU Libraries Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, LA 70803 Phone: 225-578-2217 Fax: 225-578-6825 E-Mail: email@example.com ---------------------- Forwarded by Janellyn P Kleiner/jkleiner/LSU on 08/24/2005 07:56 AM --------------------------- Marsha M Aucoin 08/24/2005 07:26 AM To: Janellyn P Kleiner/jkleiner/LSU@LSU cc: Subject: Re: [SERIALST] Open Letter to Research Councils UK: Rebuttal of ALPSP Critique ---------------------- Forwarded by Marsha M Aucoin/maucoi4/LSU on 08/24/2005 07:26 AM --------------------------- Albert Henderson <chessNIC@COMPUSERVE.COM>@LIST.UVM.EDU> on 08/23/2005 07:46:20 PM Please respond to "SERIALST: Serials in Libraries Discussion Forum" <SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU> Sent by: "SERIALST: Serials in Libraries Discussion Forum" <SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU> To: SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU cc: (bcc: Marsha M Aucoin/maucoi4/LSU) Subject: Re: [SERIALST] Open Letter to Research Councils UK: Rebuttal of ALPSP Critique on 23 Aug 2005 "Hamaker, Chuck" <cahamake@EMAIL.UNCC.EDU> wrote: > As usual in mentioning LSU's cancellations Al Henderson mis-represents > key elements of what was achieved. LSU subscribed to new journal titles > AND enhanced access to other titles through unmediated document delivery > as a result of the cancellations. There was little evidence that the > cancelled titles harmed the collection in any way. [snip] Congratulations to Chuck for making the best of a miserable, selfish management policy. LSU financed its library appropriately for a voc-ag or trade school while getting federal research grants designed to generate more and more publications. Unlike any other research university that I reviewed, LSU held its library spending at zero growth, around $3.3 million for years while its sponsored research grew from $18 to $68 million. Library Federal Year Materials R&D ($000,000) ($000,000) 1983 3.31 18.79 1984 2.89 20.82 1985 3.13 26.09 1986 3.39 27.81 1987 3.49 36.50 1988 3.37 38.88 1989 3.31 39.09 1990 3.35 40.89 1991 3.30 55.95 1992 4.48 49.21 1993 3.15 58.20 1994 2.98 67.69 When I first published these figures years ago, some assistant-provost-type claimed my figures were wrong. I sent my data and never heard another word. I certainly would think twice about sending any serious student or researcher there. If I were at a federal science agency I would look closely to ascertain if collections were up-to-date and complete, if research proposals were based on the latest research, and if research in progress was responsive to latest developments. LSU's financial achievements as a 'research university'were at the expense of: (A) the commons, since its strategy caused subscription rates paid by other libraries to rise: 1. because remaining subscribers had to share the burden, 2. by generating increased numbers of articles, adding to production. (B) serious researchers who were forced to find articles through secondary publications rather than browse each incoming issue -- or to pay for their own subscriptions with grant monies. Thanks for the comment. Best wishes, Albert Henderson Former Editor, PUBLISHING RESEARCH QUARTERLY 1994-2000 Contributor HIGHER EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES. AN ENCYCLOPEDIA (ABC-CLIO 2002) -----Original Message----- From: SERIALST: Serials in Libraries Discussion Forum [mailto:SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU] On Behalf Of Albert Henderson Sent: Tuesday, August 23, 2005 9:08 AM To: SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU Subject: [SERIALST] Open Letter to Research Councils UK: Rebuttal of ALPSP Critique Dear Serialst While sharing a vision of open access to information by researchers at no cost beyond belonging to a library, I believe that the behavior of university budget managers over the last 50 years contradicts the following claim: > The disastrous scenario predicted by ALPSP is that an RCUK mandate would cause > libraries to cancel subscriptions, which would in turn lead to the financial failure > of scholarly journals, and so to the collapse of the quality control and peer review > process that publishers manage. > > Not only are these claims unsubstantiated, but all the evidence to date > shows the reverse to be true: not only do journals thrive and co-exist alongside > author self-archiving, but they can actually benefit from it -- both in terms of > more citations and more subscriptions. The fact is that the four percent of academic libraries that control 40% of spending provide an economic base for the scientific record. As soon as plain paper photocopies became available and interlibrary borrowing became legal substitutes for paid subscriptions, these major research universities cut their library spending, systematically whittling it by more than half. One engineering school, Stevens Institute, bragged it had cut all subscriptions, intending to exist on loans. LSU turned down the same path. Not only have subscriptions been decimated, the viability of the scholarly monograph has been called into question. Perhaps the worst insult to libraries was the closing of its historic school of library science by Columbia University, on grounds of poor profitability. The claim of finance managers to have no money is simply bogus in very many cases. As a matter of public record, the profitability of all higher education institutions increased by roughly the same percentage as they saved by cuts to library spending, as reported to the US Department of Education (see upcoming AGAINST THE GRAIN). Albert Henderson Former Editor, PUBLISHING RESEARCH QUARTERLY 1994-2000 Contributor HIGHER EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES. AN ENCYCLOPEDIA (ABC-CLIO 2002) <firstname.lastname@example.org> More reading: Henderson, Albert. 1999. Information science and information policy. The use of constant dollars and other indicators to manage research investments. Journal of the American Society for Information Science. 50,4:366-379. Online PDF version http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/cgi-bin/fulltext?ID=55001184&PLACEBO= IE.pdf DOI 10.1002/(SICI)1097-4571(1999)50:4<366::AID-ASI15>3.0.CO;2-3 Day, Colin. 1999. The economics of publishing: the consequences of library and research copying. Journal of the American Society for Information Science. 50(14):1346-1349. . . . .