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Journal Licensing Workflow (2nd ed.)

Overview of Journal Licensing Process

In order to place a subscription for a resource, the library must first check for a license, and second, set up an order in Alma. Only after both of these tasks have been completed can an actual subscription be placed. The library is required to complete a license if any is available. The flowchart identifies the various steps in the licensing process, as well as, the general cases to be encountered when checking for a license. The general cases are as follows:

1. When checking for a license, one is found, the library must complete licensing.

2. When checking for a license, one cannot be found but terms and conditions applicable to the subscription ("subscription terms and conditions") are available, a review of the terms and conditions is conducted applying the same criteria as for a license. If the terms and conditions are deemed to be problematic or not acceptable, the library must complete licensing.

3. When checking for a license, one cannot be found but terms and conditions applicable to the subscription ("subscription terms and conditions") are available, a review of the terms and conditions is conducted applying the same criteria as for a license. If the terms and conditions are deemed to be non-problematic or acceptable, the library is not required to complete a license.

4. When checking for a license, one cannot be found nor are terms and conditions applicable to the subscription ("subscription terms and conditions") available, the library is not required to complete a license.

5. When checking for a license, the publisher or vendor indicates the Shared E-Resource Understanding (SERU) is used for licensing content, send an email notification that includes the journal title(s) and publisher indicating the license for the identified journal title(s) is SERU.

The flowchart identifying the sequence of steps for completing the licensing review process reflects four key action points in the decision tree:

  1. Does the library have a current license on file for the journal title(s)?
  2. Based on a thorough review of the publisher or vendor website, is there a license or subscription terms & conditions agreement available for the journal title(s)?
  3. Does the publisher or vendor respond to requests to provide a license for the journal title(s)?
  4. Based on the response received or lack thereof, how is the library to proceed in the matter of subscribing to the journal title(s)? 

The intent of the licensing process is to obtain a valid license and the name of a contact with whom the library can follow-up. When a license is under review and it is not possible for the library and publisher or vendor to reach mutually agreed upon terms and conditions, a subscription to the journal title(s) cannot proceed.

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