Sub-sidy/cription for ArXiv: Collaborative Business Model Changes Funding Structure

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Sat, 23 Jan 2010 03:15:46 -0500

Re: Cornell University Library Engages More Institutions in Supporting
Collaborative Business Model Changes Funding Structure

On 22-Jan-10, at 11:10 PM, Nat Gustafson-Sundell wrote:

> This is actually an Open Access sustainable funding model and
> could very well become THE model (or one of the leading models)
> for scholarly communications, depending on the enhancements (say,
> if these included more formal quality control) eventually ...
> although I expect the old dogs will keep circling around the old
> models as long as there is anything to bark about.

Voluntary institutional sub-sidy/cription as a sustainable model,
through all economic times, tough and tender??

Here's an alternative model whose sustainablity is less founded on
blind faith:

Institutions have many self-interested reasons for wanting to host,
archive, manage, monitor, measure and showcase their own research
article outputs. The annual scale of their own local article output is
also manageable and sustainable at the institutional level, within its
existing infrastructure:

     Carr, L. The Value that Repositories Add
     Swan, A. The Business of Digital Repositories
     Harnad, S. Institutional vs. Central Repositories

Hence what will happen is that instead of trying to sustain a central
repository like Arxiv -- most of whose costliness derives from the
fact that it is a single direct locus of deposit and archiving from
all institutions, worldwide -- direct deposit and hosting will instead
be offloaded onto the distributed network of institutional
repositories, with Arxiv becoming merely another central harvester,
providing global search services (sustainable if it provides
functionality that can compete with other OAI services or Google

But voluntary sub-sidy/cription will no doubt sustain things for a
while. (Things do seem to catch on rather slowly in this domain...)

Stevan Harnad

> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> [] On Behalf Of Philip Davis
> Sent: Thursday, January 21, 2010 6:53 PM
> To:
> Subject: ArXiv Grows Up, Adopts Subscription-like Model
> ArXiv Grows Up, Adopts Subscription-like Model The celebrated
> e-print service will now rely on annual library donations, while
> its long-term business plan is still in the works.
> see:
Received on Sat Jan 23 2010 - 08:16:03 GMT

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