Towards the Collective Collection: Lessons Learned from PALCI’s DDA Pilot Projects and Next Steps

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The Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc. (PALCI) developed demand-driven acquisition (DDA) programs to facilitate resource sharing of e-monographs and to build collective ebook collections thereby complementing E-ZBorrow, the consortium’s print-based ILL service. Committed to perpetual ownership, PALCI’s programs deliberately eschewed aggregator models with STL (short term lease/ loan) thresholds in favor of purchasing upon the first substantial use at a negotiated multiplier. This unique approach to consortial DDA resulted in hundreds of titles triggered for purchase, many of which experienced post-purchase usage across the membership. It also resulted in irregular starts and stops and workflow frustrations illustrating challenges related to funding and communication. This article is intended to add an important case study to the literature on consortial DDA through a critical evaluation of PALCI’s programs with ebrary, EBSCO, and JSTOR. Perhaps more importantly, it is intended to inform consortial stakeholders about decisions to replicate (or not) PALCI’s programs in an effort to repeat successes and avoid past failures.


Published in Collaborative Librarianship

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.