For many university presses and other publishers of scholarly monographs, libraries represent a small share of their market, with sales to students and other individuals in academia far outstripping institutional purchasing. Paperback sales for classroom use – so-called “course adoption” titles – have traditionally been the mainstay of scholarly monograph publishing. As these publishers begin to make e-books available to libraries through a growing number e-book aggregators and collectives, titles with the potential for course adoption have posed challenges, but also highlighted the need for experimentation and new solutions.
There is clearly a value to scholars and researchers in making these titles available electronically at their institution, and there has been significant focus on the rising costs for course books. However, the availability of a single e-book in a library has the potential to adversely impact books sales to individuals at that institution. For that reason, many books with the potential for course adoption are available only in print, or have been excluded from library-facing sales channels.
This session will explore how best to make course adoption books available to academic libraries, in ways that serve the interests of scholars, libraries, and publishers. Speakers will include representatives from a university press; a library currently experimenting with e-book acquisition through a variety of models and platforms; and an e-book collective that has begun making course adoption titles available to its institutional customers.