Elsevier update

OSU Libraries have identified a list of titles that we will be sending to Elsevier. We will be asking for a price quote for subscription access to all of these titles, and for a subset of the list we will be asking for a one-time cost for issues published in 2023.This is an expanded version of the list we shared here. We used the input we gathered from faculty, departments, schools and colleges to add additional titles.

We are submitting this list together with Portland State University libraries.

It is likely that we we will not be able to subscribe to all of these titles at a price we can afford. So there will be another round of input coming when we prioritize the list. The Dean of Libraries will be giving an update at the December Faculty Senate meeting, and we will also ask for that input by email after we hear back from Elsevier.

Hein Online Academic

We are currently in talks to acquire HeinOnline Academic. This is a government documents and legal research database. It will replace some of the content previously included in our Nexis Uni contract. It contains over 1600 full-text legal periodicals, historical texts, and foreign and international materials. Primary legal materials include the Federal Register, U.S. Statutes at Large, U.S. Reports. U.S. Supreme court decisions, presidential documents, attorney general opinions, state and federal case law, and much more.

HeinOnline is currently available on the library website as a trial product. If you want to provide feedback on the product, please fill out this evaluation form.

Upcoming negotiations: Lexis-Nexis

Lexis-Nexis (also called Nexis Uni) is a database of news, business and legal sources. Our current contract ends July 1, 2023. We are currently working on an addendum to the standard contract. In particular, we want to amend this contract to align with this principle:

Confidentiality of user data generated by their use of licensed materials must be maintained. Usage data must not be disclosed or sold to any third party without prior consent. 

In recent years, several news reports have surfaced raising concerns about how this company uses and shares user data. In light of these reports, and related lawsuits, we believe that this addendum is necessary. If Lexis-Nexis is unwilling to include an addendum that provides these protections, we will not move forward with a contract. We will share more information as it becomes available.

Negotiation Update:

As of July 1st, 2023, Oregon State University Libraries was not able to negotiate changes to the terms and conditions of the Nexis Uni contract to protect user privacy. This means we no longer have a subscription to the Nexis Uni database. Please consult our library research guides to find alternative newspaper and legal case access.

Town Hall recording available

Dean of Libraries Anne-Marie Deitering hosted a one-hour town hall on February 27 via Zoom Webinar to share information about OSU’s lapsed contract with Elsevier, discuss the data the library has been gathering to inform future negotiations with Elsevier, and answer questions about the negotiations and the scholarly publishing landscape. The webinar was recorded, and you can find the recording at this link:


Access is limited to members of the OSU community.

Town Hall with the Dean of Libraries

Dean of Libraries Anne-Marie Deitering will host a one-hour town hall on February 27 from 4 to 5 p.m. via Zoom to share information about the actions the library has taken to support OSU researchers access Elsevier content, discuss the data the library has been gathering to inform future negotiations with Elsevier, and answer questions about the negotiations and the scholarly publishing landscape more broadly.

See the Provost’s message for more information.

Alternative access to Elsevier content for teaching and research

Library workers have been putting new workflows and resources in place to help OSU easily access Elsevier content after our contract lapses at the end of December 2022.

The most recent information can always be found on this guide: Article Access Alternatives.

  1. For all of the journals on our Subscribed Title List, we purchased ongoing access to all of the content that was a part of our subscriptions. If the article you need is on this list, and was published between 1997 and 2022, you should still have immediate access to it.
  2. We stood up a new Article Delivery service to improve our ability to deliver paywalled Elsevier articles by request. Library users will now be able to choose whether they want to borrow an article via Interlibrary Loan, or purchase the article via Article Delivery.
  3. The Article Delivery service will also make it easier for users to discovery open access versions of articles they want.

OSU to pause Elsevier negotiations

Librarians from OSU, UO and PSU each decided on behalf of their respective institutions to pause negotiations with Elsevier for the remainder of 2022. This means that each institution’s contract with Elsevier will end 12/31/2022.

Message from Provost Ed Feser to the OSU community

Message from the Dean of Libraries to the OSU community

Elsevier negotiation update

After the initial meeting with Elsevier representatives, our joint negotiating team (from OSU, PSU, and UO) decided to focus first on some issues that we thought would be quickly resolved, to create space to work on the pieces of the agreement that would be more challenging. A small group has been working on those quicker issues. With our next face to face meeting coming up on August 3, 2022, we thought this would be good time to update our OSU community on the progress so far.

We are structuring our negotiations around the sustainable scholarly communication principles that were endorsed by the OSU Faculty Senate in May 2022. Some of the principles are already embedded into our existing agreement with Elsevier. We are focusing our energy on 4 areas where we believe change is needed:

Authorized users:

We are working productively on defining language that will work with OSU’s systems. We expect this will be resolved soon.

Open access:

Our discussions here have focused on this statement from our negotiating principles: “If the publisher has the technical ability to do so, they will directly deposit scholarly articles into Oregon State University’s ScholarsArchive@OSU repository”. We have not been able to make progress on this so far, and will be devoting a future face-to-face meeting to this issue.


This one is mixed. Elsevier has agreed to remove the confidentiality clause from our final agreement. However, transparency is also connected to price, and that piece is more complicated. We are asking for “a fair and sustainable price to publishers for value-added services, based on transparent and cost-based pricing models.” We will be focusing our August 3rd face-to-face meeting on this issue.

The 3 Oregon libraries are suggesting a new model based on usage, calculated at the article level. This would be a significant shift from all of our previous contracts, where costs have been calculated at the journal level. We believe that our proposed model is the most transparent way to define costs. We also believe that our proposed model recognizes the value that Elsevier’s platform adds to researcher workflows, while it gives all three libraries a transparent and clear way to explain to our communities what we are paying for. If we are not able to come to agreement on this approach, we will be asking Elsevier to develop a counter-proposal that transparently connects costs to value.

User data:

We are working productively on language that will define protections for user data (data created when researchers use licensed materials and Elsevier’s platform).

Sharing and Fair Use:

Our discussions here have focused on expanding our ability to share licensed materials with other libraries. This will also be the subject of a future face-to-face meeting.

Opening position – Elsevier negotiation

With librarians from the University of Oregon and Portland State, we met with representatives from Elsevier on Wednesday, May 18. This meeting focused on introductions and logistics. We also shared opening positions and contextual information.

OSU/UO/PSU Opening Position:

  • Remove content fee entirely from the [3] contracts.
  • Reduce our Cell Press spend by 75%.
  • Reduce each institution’s spend by 50% without changing current read and/or subscription access.
  • Keep inflation rate between -2.5% and 2%.
  • Replace language in section 7.8 of the current contract to say: The parties agree as of now that this Agreement and its terms may be made publicly available on the Customer’s website, Open APC, and in the ESAC Registry no earlier than 30 days after the Customer and the Publisher have signed the agreement.”
  • Provide written notice to our institutions if Elsevier wants to sell or give our [user] data to a 3rd party or another RELX entity, if they are compelled to give our data; or if they have a data breach.
  • Remove the geographic restriction for Inter-library Loan.
  • Move institutional authored or co-authored articles and book chapters from pay-wall to open access on an annual basis, releasing 5 additional years for each year of our contract.
  • Work with each institution to redefine authorized users (Note – this is asking for a change in the labels used for authorized users to match local terms).

Shared Values – Elsevier negotiation

We traveled down to Eugene on Wednesday, May 18 to meet with representatives from Elsevier. We are collaboratively negotiating with librarians from the University of Oregon and Portland State. In our discussions prior to this meeting, we identified several shared values. These values align nicely with the values articulated in OSU Libraries’ negotiating principles.


Our universities’ contributions to Elsevier’s product are ongoing and substantial. However, historical pricing models do not reflect: The academic labor of authors, reviewers and editors; The value of the APC’s paid by our authors; The increasing amount of open access content in Elsevier packages; or the fact that we continue to pay, year after year, for older materials that have depreciated in value. For each of our institutions, readership trends contradict any claim that the practice of adding titles we did not request adds value. We will prioritize agreements that provide fair and transparent pricing for the content our communities need.


As Oregon’s largest public research universities, our missions include service to the state of Oregon. We will prioritize investments that ensure broad access to the research we produce and to the resources we license.


Inquiry depends on the right to use and share information. We are committed to agreements that uphold authors’ rights to use and share their own research, and to deposit articles in institutional repositories. We are committed to agreements that support our right to share resources with libraries, and that support efforts to build sustainable infrastructure to support sharing.


As public institutions with broad service missions, and as libraries acting on behalf of those institutions, we must be transparent and accountable to our communities. We will prioritize agreements that reflect this commitment. We are committed to a transparent negotiation, we will not sign non-disclosure agreements, and we will share details whenever possible to be accountable to our local and professional communities.