Economics and Usage of Digital Libraries: Byting the BulletSkip other details (including permanent urls, DOI, citation information)
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The Digital Library holds a collection of more than 20 Elsevier titles online. Unlike ABI, IEL, and ABI/Inform which offer a package of publications, the Elsevier collection is based on the set of journals the library took in paper form. These were selected as being core journals, based on library usage and on the library's understanding of BT's research interests. Because access to these journals can be more easily recorded than that to those in paper format, usage patterns can be tracked more easily, advising the librarian which titles are no longer appropriate to hold in the library's collection. In addition, the library's document delivery system records the publishers of documents requested, allowing the librarian to monitor new titles for inclusion. Three titles are heavily used, but even these are not accessed at all in 30% of the weeks. BT's recent decision to stop research in the speech processing area is reflected by a sharp drop in accesses to journals in these areas. In between these two extremes are the majority of journals that are used sporadically. In spite of the additional data on how frequently these journals are used, collection management is still difficult because the masses of data now available make it challenging to extract meaningful information.