With a university system as large as SUNY, there is an expectation that we should be able to get good deals on electronic library resources. "Shouldn't we get a consortial price for that resource?"
Examples exist where this is the case. One good candidate is where the total that all SUNYConnect libraries pay for a resource is within or near the price range of what it would cost for the entire consortium to access the resource. Other times an offer may come in from a database producer and/or publisher of electronic journals. "Look, if each of your libraries just pitched in X dollars, then you'd have access for everyone." OLIS does, however have to remind vendors that even if they have the best content and a great price that does not magically generate those dollars in many small and tight library budgets.
For, in these scenarios, we're talking about SUNY library dollars going further without additional funds coming from a central source. Efforts are underway to procure monies that would increase the electronic resources of all SUNYConnect libraries. But until available we are mostly talking about buying more with the current library-based funds.
The distance between the ideal and reality can thus be pretty great. With the diversity of the SUNYConnect libraries, it is relatively rare for one resource to be of use across all of those institutions. Certainly it is more common for one resource to be of varying use across all the different libraries.
Yet we all hold out for that ideal. The vendors see the possibility of more of SUNY using their resource. The libraries see the chance of getting the resource for less money, or for what is a good price. The OLIS is interested in seeing more information access across SUNYConnect. So we keep at it.
One of the best examples is that of Gale's Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center. Enough SUNY libraries (40) expressed interest in this resource that it paid for access across all of SUNYConnect. Likewise, major SUNY customers of ScienceDirect and New England Journal of Medicine subsidize access to these resources for SUNYConnect.
Getting to such agreements takes a great deal of back and forth for all parties. Final pricing for a campus isn't known until it's known which campuses are participating. Libraries don't want to commit to the resource until they know the actual price. To the extent that you can let OLIS know that you are interested in a resource and some ballpark dollar figure that can be penciled in as a statement of that interest, this will help streamline this iterative process.
Database trials and offers are listed on the web. Specific
proposals and details are sent to closed lists. For part of
Let John Schumacher know if you have questions and/or to
verify your campus contact. Feel free to get in touch with
him on these topics and to express your level of interest in
a database offer.