Norwegian research institutions unable to reach agreement with Elsevier

BI's journal subscription agreement with academic publisher Elsevier has expired. After lengthy negotiations, it is now clear that Norwegian research institutions are unable to reach an agreement with the publisher Elsevier to renew subscriptions.

Update 12 march 2019: UNIT has not reached an agreement with Elsevier for 2019.

The Norwegian Directorate for ICT and Joint Services in Higher Education & Research, Unit, informed us in March 2019 that there will be no agreement with academic publisher Elsevier in 2019. This means that BI might lose access to a number of journals from Elsevier (through their database ScienceDirect). We do not know if, or when Elsevier will shut of access.

However, BI retains access to 68 of the most read journals at BI, on the basis of other subscription agreements.

How can I get access to articles in Elsevier’s journals? 

There are several ways to get access to articles in journals that BI does not subscribe to:

1. Contact the library

Articles that are not freely available and which the library does not have in its collections can often be acquired from other libraries in Norway and abroad. Search for and order the article in Oria, or contact your campus library for more information.

2. Use plug-ins in the browser

Search for articles in the way you are used to and use “plug-ins” in the browser to show you where to find open accessible versions of an article (you will need to download and install the plug-ins in your web browser).

We recommend these tools (works best on Chrome and Firefox):

3. Find manuscript-versions of articles

Many scientists and institutions archive accepted manuscript-versions of articles in digital repositories. Most universities and colleges have their own repositories. BI faculty make research articles available in BI Open Archive. Author's accepted manuscript (or post-print) refers to the last peer-reviewed manuscript before copy-editing.

You can find these versions by searching in Google Scholar. You can search in all Norwegian repositories in NORA

4. Contact the author or other researchers

Often researchers can share articles that are not open access between themselves (depending on the agreement with the publisher) - so called "scholarly sharing". You may send the author an e-mail.

5. Buy articles

Most publishers offers the opportunity to buy articles that are in a subscription-based journal. You will have to cover the costs for this yourself.

Why haven’t Unit and Elsevier reached an agreement?

Norway’s goal is that all publicly-funded Norwegian research articles should be made openly available by 2024, and the government has established guidelines and measures for open access to research articles. Institutions and consortia that negotiate agreements with publishers shall ensure that these agreements promote open access without increasing total costs, and that the terms and conditions are open and transparent. Elsevier has not made and offer that was acceptable for the Norwegian consortia.

This means that all Norwegian higher education institutions lose access to Elsevier journals from 1 Januar 2019. The same currently applies for institutions in Sweden and Germany where satisfactory agreements have not been reached.

In the current subscription system, scientific articles are behind paywalls, and the large international publishers are charging more and more for subscriptions. Norwegian institutions are currently paying more than 330 million NOK every year for reading access to scientific articles, including those written by scientists in Norwegian institutions.

Why can’t BI subscribe to journals from Elsevier outside the consortia deal?

BI is a member of Universities Norway (UHR), a cooperative body for 33 accredited universities and university colleges. UHR has decided upon a joint negotiation strategy regarding open access to research articles. BI also supports a joint negotiating strategy.

Questions regarding access to articles?

Contact BI library

Questions regarding the negotiations with Elsevier?

Contact Library director Dagmar Langeggen