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A non-profit publication of the Office of the University Relations of Virginia Tech,
including The Conductor, a special section of the Spectrum printed 4 times a year

Libraries Complete



Spectrum Volume 21 Issue 03 - September 10, 1998

This summer the University Libraries completed the serials review announced during the spring and identified for cancellation a total of 1,292 serials with a cumulative annual subscription cost of over $565,000.
The typical cancelled title is a journal, for which issues will not be received after December, but canceled titles also included annuals, "advances-in" publications, and monographic series. Following the procedures established in prior reviews, the libraries studied hundreds of comments received from faculty members and other members of the university community and made the final cancellations from an initial listing of over 2,000 titles under active consideration.
With this round completed, the libraries have now canceled over 4,700 serials during the 1990s. Approximately 12,500 current serial subscriptions are still maintained. With the budgetary relief granted by the serials cancellations, it will be possible for the libraries to restore an adequate level of book-buying, at least for the current fiscal year.
However, the libraries' ability to maintain adequate discretionary funding for books, videos, and reference sets, as well as to hold off the necessity for further serials cuts, remains vulnerable to a complex set of circumstances, including the state economy, exchange rates, state and local priorities, and trends in scientific and scholarly publishing.
This turbulent environment is shared with all other US research libraries, most of whom have also undertaken repeated serials cancellations in the 90s, though not always on the scale experienced at Tech.
Lists of the canceled titles are available at Newman Reserve and at each branch location. Library users with questions about the serials review and its outcomes should contact Principal Bibliographer Paul Metz, 1-5663, pmetz@vt.edu.