Texas A&M University Faculty Senate Backs University Libraries

By Marketing and Communications | 12-03-2020

This year, Texas A&M University Libraries joined 43 Academic Libraries across Texas to create the Texas Library Coalition for United Action (TLCUA). The Coalition hopes to change current publishing models as well as the relationships between academic institutions and publishers, including academic publisher Elsevier.

The University Libraries and TLCUA got a boost on Nov. 9 when the Texas A&M Faculty Senate unanimously passed a formal resolution supporting the negotiations being conducted with Elsevier. The resolution shows that A&M Faculty understand the importance of the work being done to create a more open and sustainable scholarly publishing ecosystem. The resolution also shows that faculty stand prepared for any outcome with the negotiations including the Coalition walking away from negotiations even at the risk of loss of access to current Elsevier content.

David Carlson, Dean of University Libraries at Texas A&M, has been a dedicated advocate for libraries to take concerted action to reduce costs and retain ownership of faculty work.  Carlson noted that “The system of scholarly communications is extremely important and must be sustained but we believe that it also needs to change to be more reflective of our research and educational mission.”

He added “This unanimous vote of support by the faculty is a clear and strong affirmation of our goals. It demonstrates that faculty understand and support the need for change and sustainability, even at the risk of loss of access.”

As TLCUA continues to engage with Elsevier, the Coalition hopes to negotiate an improved and sustainable model for the dissemination of scholarship and to create a more balanced approach to faculty ownership of their scholarly work. Additionally, the Coalition seeks to reduce costs immediately and ongoing by creating sustainable subscription models.

Carlson also noted that “Due to its size, diversity and commitment to collaboration, we believe this Coalition of academic/research libraries in Texas has a unique and compelling opportunity to effect change and assume a leadership position in the world-wide movement tor change in scholarly communications.”

The Coalition institutions collectively have more than 660,000 students and 44,000 faculty. Collectively, the libraries of the Coalition represent an annual expenditure of Elsevier subscriptions estimated at over $27 million. By these and other measures, the Coalition represents one of the largest and most diverse U.S. collective negotiation consortia of its kind.


Media contact:
Patrick Zinn, Director of Marketing Texas A&M University Libraries
pzinn@library.tamu.edu or 979.845.4265