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Faculty Senate

Faculty Senate » December 5, 2005 Minutes

Library Committee

December 5, 2005

Present: Gary Beach, Joe Kerkvliet, Molly Engle (Chair), Melodie Putnam, John Pollitz (OSU libraries, ad hoc); Rich Carter (Task Force on Scholarly Communications), Mike Boock (TFSC), Pat Wheeler; Deborah Rubel, Michael Witbeck, Linda Ashkenas (notetaker).
Absent: Evan Gottlieb.

John Pollitz: Librarian for public service and innovative technology.
Two members of Scholarly Committee Task Force: Rich Carter (Chemistry) and Mike Boock (head of library technical services).

Notes of November 7 meeting (after Gary Beach's editing) approved without dissent.

Old Business
Focus on continuing the work of the Task Force for Scholarly Communication (TSFC). See 2005-2006 Workplan (Pat Wheeler, Nov. meeting).

Item 2: Review of library's cost of journals and documentation of price differential between commercial and society journals

  • Focus needs to continue on compiling journals in which faculty publish, documenting cost and impact factor, and presenting results back to the faculty. Consensus is that this should be performed by individual departments (see below).
  • Rich Carter, (TFSC, Chemistry) compiled the top journals for his department, and was surprised at the cost difference between commercial and society journals, and the lack of impact factor difference. Information was well received by his faculty
  • Bruce McCune, Botany and Plant Pathology, heard Faculty Senate has presentation of the issue, and would like to compile a similar list. Melodie Putnam (FSLC, also in this department) will take the lead with Bruce.
  • Pat Wheeler presented a recent list of journal prices online from UCSB (see which includes summary tables of pricing by discipline. In general, society journals charge 20-50% less than commercially published organs. Pat also brought up the issue of ownership of journal (society or commercial) and price control. She edits the Journal of Phycology, where society reserves rights to set prices despite being published by Blackwell. However, this requires negotiation by society journal editors (see item 3, below).
  • Ten departments per year have program reviews. General consensus that compiling a list of journals in which the departmental faculty publish should become a part of this review. Gary Beach will submit a request to Curriculum Council and Graduate Council to include this task in the packet these departments prepare for review. This should not be a laundry list of all journals; at most, there should be 50 per department, and should include the number of publications per journal. Some departments already do this, but there is no standardization in the metrics used.
  • Within FSLC members present, the following departments will submit their journal lists to the library for feedback on pricing and impact factor:
  • Botany & Plant Pathology (Melodie Putnam)
    Fisheries & Wildlife (Linda Ashkenas)
    Forest Science (Melodie Putnam will request from them)
    Economics (Joe Kerkvliet)
    Public Health (Molly Engle)
  • Note that Chemistry, all of COAS, and HDFS already had this analysis performed by the TFSC last year.
  • Library turn-around time has been very fast on cost and impact factor.
  • So far, no input from some Colleges (Engineering in particular).
  • Molly Engle suggested publishing these prototype results someplace faculty are likely to see them, provide contacts, and other departments could follow (see item 4).

Item 3: Annual Editors/Society Officers Meeting

  • To form network of on-campus editors who can work with journals on pricing, copyright, electronic access, etc. Bonnie Allen to help generate list of invitees; Alexis Walker & Pat Wheeler will take the lead on inviting folks.
  • Suggestion is to have 1 or 2 library committee members involved with this effort. Melodie Putnam volunteered to help with this new task. Melodie is rotating off the Library Committee in June 2006, but would stay on in this sub-committee.
  • Molly will contact Vickie Nunnemaker to see whether her term can be extended.

Item 4: Articles in OSU This Week

  • TFSC proposed a series of consecutive articles, to be published in OSU This Week. Topics to address: Journal cost, open access, OSU institutional repository, impact factors, copyright issues (last suggested by Bonnie Allen). General plan is to work on them during winter term, and then publish consecutively in spring term. Teams of two will write each article, with one member each from the LC and the TFSC.
  • Cost of journals: Joe Kerkvliet & Rich Carter
    Open access: Michael Witbeck & ?
    OSU Institutional Repository: Michael Boock & Melodie

    Impact Factors: Alexis Walker & Molly Engle
    Copyright issues: ??

  • Form of articles: Short: probably 500 to 1000 words. Background information can go on the library web page.
  • The entire Library Committee will review the series at end of winter term. Gary Beach will help edit.
  • Pat Wheeler will talk to OSU This Week to arrange publication.
  • Discussion about relative costs of paper, electronic, both, archives, and what information can be released. Some pricing information is considered confidential. Costs posted on a given Journal website will be the information used in the write-ups. We can use average costs without mentioning specific publishers or journals.
  • Linda Ashkenas suggested we should have an announcement prior to the start of the series. John Pollitz will take the lead on writing this; aim is to set up history and basis of the problem. Other outlets (e.g., the Barometer) may pick up the series later.
  • Joe Kerkvliet will investigate similar publications at UO and PSU where the series might also be published. Note that UO passed a similar resolution as to that of the OSU faculty senate concerning the costs of scholarly publications.

Item 5: OSU Forum on Publication Practices

  • Pat Wheeler presented copies of the workshop held at PSU: an outside speaker, 4-5 local panelists, 50 attendees, videotaped and distributed. It will probably take several years to measure impacts of these types of presentations.
  • Pat has given several well-received presentations to libraries from the point of view of an editor. There is a need to make faculty, editors, society members more aware of the issues. Many societies are losing members because faculty can access their journals through their library electronically. The problem varies by discipline, but generally sciences are much worse than humanities.
  • An additional issue concerns manuscript reviews for commercial companies. Peer review service is free and is vital to good quality publications, but commercial publishers are taking economic advantage of it.
  • It will be a lot of work to pull together a forum; is it the best way to go?
  • Joe Kerkvliet brought up the idea of collecting statistics on faculty changes in paper subscriptions, number of faculty who are associate editors, and what journals faculty review for. Tabled for lack of time.

Other items:

  • Carlos Jensen and one of his classes in Computer Science performed an ethnographic survey of library use and layout. Students came up with plans and suggestions for the library.
  • Students and textbook costs: A recent article in the Barometer suggested the library purchase 2 copies of each text assigned for each class (enormous costs). John Pollitz will meet with Faculty Senate to discuss. Perhaps the library, bookstore, and student government may need to combine forces to examine this issue. Textbook price is a significant problem for many students, and inflation of those costs is similar to that seen in scholarly publications.

Next meeting

  • Address standing rules change proposed at last meeting and not discussed today.
  • Consider whether we want to do a forum on costs of scholarly publications.
  • Gary Beach will be notetaker.