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Study sheds light on costs of publisher deals

Consortia of European research institutions are spending at least €1 billion a year on electronic services and subscriptions to journals, a study has found.

Preliminary results from the European University Association’s Big Deals Survey 2018, published on 7 February, showed that 31 consortia representing 30 countries spent just over €1bn in 2018 on “all subscriptions to electronic resources”, including academic journals and databases.

“The figure is impressive,” Lidia Borrell-Damián, the EUA’s director for research and innovation, told Research Europe. “What is even more impressive is that this is an underestimation: it doesn’t include article processing charges, other consortia, and so on.” Costs such as these probably amount to an additional €1bn, she suggested.

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