The 33rd Annual UKSG Conference was in Edinburgh this week, with a varied programme and over 850 attendees. A number of themes started to recur through the sessions and discussions, as summarised:
- Big deal bubble must burst, as it is unsustainable for many institutions
- We must move further towards open access, but it is not yet clear how
- Journal impact factor isn’t good enough anymore, we need to review the commentary and produce new ranking factors
- Linked information is nearly here, allowing informal and pre-publish conversations to be viewed and measured in a structured way on the web
- The age of the article is here, meaning metrics, usage and discoverability will increasingly be at article level rather than the ‘journal container’
- Just-in-time must replace just-in-case, as no one can maintain a full array of items that may only occasionally be required
The discussion around these issues is healthy, as is the growing volume with which librarians and researchers are willing to speak them out loud. However these key themes are notable for representing problems, not solutions. It is clear that licensing models, researcher metrics, electronic and open access still have some way to evolve to meet the growing needs and expectations of the community.