Finanzas y Desarrollo, Marzo de 2008 (Spanish Edition)

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This crisis environment has also impacted public libraries, as observed in the studies by Arroyo-Vazquez et al. Indeed, only the libraries of higher education institutions preserved their funding in , with a slight 2.

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Merlo Vega Merlo Vega, J. Librarians facing the crisis: Action. Among its conclusions, the following can be highlighted:. Continuing with an inflationary model based on exponential and unlimited content growth is no longer possible. In the international context, the first documented reference regarding the impact of the economic crisis on university libraries was the publication of the findings of a survey of librarians from different countries attending the Charleston Library Conference held in There, participants were required to reveal their opinions on the effect of the recession on their own libraries.

The results indicated that The impact of the economic downturn on libraries: With special reference to university libraries. Journal of Academic Librarianship , 36 5 , pp. The recession, budgets, expectations and realities. The same year, Guarria and Wang Guarria, C.

The economic crisis and its effect on libraries. Regarding Europe, Greece has been the country where the effects of this crisis have been the worst, with a negative impact on the operation of university libraries. Studies conducted by Kostagiolas and Margiola Kostagiolas, P.

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A library management response model against the economic crisis. Library Review , 60 6 , pp. Responding to crises with alliances: evidence from an academic library survey in Greece. Advances in Librarianship , 36, pp. Giannakopoulos et al. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences , , pp. Additionally, Sharing the pain, striving for gain.

Serials , 23 1 , pp. Academic Libraries in Challenging Times. An Leabharlann: The Irish Library , 19 2 , pp. Since , British university libraries have experienced funding reductions in digital format journal purchases due to the depreciation of the pound against the euro and dollar, with effects in collection development JISC, JISC The impact of the economic recession on university library and IT services. The view from the UK: the economic crisis and serials acquisitions on an offshore island.

The Serials Librarian , 59 3 , pp. Effects of the economic downturn on academic libraries in the UK: Positions and Projections in Mid New Review of Academic Librarianship , 17 1 , pp. Similarly, Harper and Corrall Harper, R. In the Netherlands, funding cuts in public libraries started in Nijboer, Nijboer, J.

How to survive the recession as a cultural entrepreneur. Paper presented at the Bobcatsss Conference , Parma , January. This declaration indicates that budgetary cuts to libraries and consortia would not be sporadic but significant, widespread, and lasting. Several proposals intended for consortia and publishers to preserve information context as much as possible are suggested in this declaration. In Spain, the five university library consortia, two library associations, and the Spanish National Research Council Archive and Library Network initiated a consortium board in , to coordinate a common strategy to negotiate with large journal publishers.

In a document released by the board in , this effort was highly commended, and the document specified in detail some of the strategies intended by the parties to negotiate with the large publishers.

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In short, this period of recession has produced diverse effects: on one hand, a salary cut and, on the other hand, a dramatic reduction in funding both for the purchase of information resources and to meet operational expenses. In addition to the previous effects, there is the position of the large groups of journal and electronic resource publishers, which, despite the economic context, have continued to raise their prices.

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In response to this contextual change, libraries have developed several strategies to maintain the same level and quality of service provision. Libraries' response to the crisis: measures to mitigate its impact.

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The Bottom Line , 24 4 , pp. Kostagiolas et al.

Among them, and because of their potential application to the Spanish context, the following are worth highlighting:. Optimizing the potential purchasing capacity through consortium conformation and realistic negotiation with providers. Better exploitation of the information provided by analysis of the use of electronic publications databases and information packages with a high reoccurrence rate of periodic publications to improve decisions on subscription renewal. To this, it should be added that it would be key to take into account the opinion of interest groups regarding such decisions.

Reviewing and improving internal processes and, in collaboration with interest groups, redesigning new, more efficient methods for providing services.

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Establishing improvement programs for the efficient use of resources, such as computers, paper, energy, outsourcing, etc. In this paper, we first intend to identify and quantify the effect of the economic recession on Spanish public university libraries regarding the following parameters:. Library services, estimated through the volume of loan services and interlibrary loan requests and the number of days that libraries are open annually. These data were compared with the effects of the economic crisis on funding, staffing, and the number of students enrolled in Spanish public universities.

Lastly, proposals made by Spanish university libraries to mitigate the effects of the economic recession were analyzed. This study takes the 47 Spanish public universities as reference. We should clarify that only on-site universities were considered. With the aim of improving the data contained in this statistical network, we have first considered their yearly evolution to verify that there were no inconsistent figures in the series.

Second, we have compared the data from REBIUN to the data collected from the different library reports, although we must note that this last approximation was conducted in only 25 cases of the total analyzed, given that they were the libraries with yearly activity reports. For librarian consortia, we considered it convenient to use the expenses incurred during the period corresponding to the purchase of electronic resources.

We obtained the data from the following sources:. Data obtained from its yearly activity reports and verified against the budgets approved annually by the Government of Catalonia. Data obtained from its resource evaluation yearly reports. Data officially provided by one of the consortium members. Consortium management has refused to provide data on its expenditures on information resources. Data on the university staff were obtained from the series Statistics on staff serving at universities , published by the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports.

Data on the number of students were obtained from the series Statistics on students , published by the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports. The data on university financial accounts come from the series Statistics on Spanish public university funding and expenditures, which registers the evolution from to , prepared by the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports. The measures adopted by libraries to face this period of crisis were obtained from two sources: their yearly library reports and the strategic planning documents found on their webpages.

Figure 1 shows that the evolution of staff varies according to professional categories. The number of librarians and assistants has been progressively declining in the period between and , ultimately resulting in a reduction of 2.

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Finally, the number of scholarships standardized to full-time registers a In absolute numbers, from to , there was a net reduction of personnel, with 56 being librarians, assistants, and students. Altogether, the permanent staff was reduced to people, corresponding to 3.

In the same period, this percentage is lower than the reduction in the teaching and research staff 4. Figure 2 shows the evolution of library expenditures on bibliographic material purchases.

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Evidently, the total expenditures of university libraries increased in the year to decline afterward, both in constant euros taking as reference and in current euros, becoming more manifest starting in This reduction in total expenditures of N: total expenditures in current euros. D: total expenditures in constant euros. N: expenditures on electronic resources in current euros. D: same but in constant euros. This percentage difference depends on the Autonomous Community AC to which the university belongs. Figure 3. Percentage of reduction on average expenditures in current euros on bibliographic material during the period by university libraries according to their regional location.

Comparing the data from information resources expenditures against the data presented by public university budgets, we can observe the following facts see Figure 4 :. First, the initial university budget increased up to the year and then started decreasing in This behavior is similar to the library expenditures on information resources. However, when we examine revenue recognition, that is, the real university income, we observe their downward trend starting in Third, as shown in Figure 4 , the data from the approved budget show a slight change in the trend, with a growth of 1.

Fourth, it should be emphasized that revenue recognition, or real university income, began to decline in These actual income values were very close to the income budgets approved by universities starting in , when universities were forced to generate balanced budgets. Figure 4. Budget evolution of initial and executed revenue of public on-site universities.

The reduction in university funding in this period was largely due to the reduction of AC subsidies for current expenditures. According to the data on the last budget execution published by the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports, in the period, there was a decrease in the volume of subsidies of nearly 1. In Spain, there are five university library consortia and two library associations that were created to consolidate the purchase of information resources.

Figure 5 shows that expenditures by the library consortia on electronic resources started to decline in However, this decline was not the same for each of the consortia; the consortium of Catalonian universities had the largest reduction. That year, the Madrid AC reduced the subsidies for the abovementioned consortium by half. Figure 5.