Goals and Parameters for Consortial Licensing of Digital Resources

The following goals and principles have been adopted by CAUL-CBUA to promote the collaborative licensing of digital resources among member libraries and other participants, when appropriate.


1. To increase the availability and use of digital resources;
2. To encourage the development of new forms of information delivery through
    collaborative initiatives;
3. To maximize the buying power of member libraries through the collaborative
    licensing of digital resources;
4. To assist member libraries in multi-year budget planning; and
5. To cooperate with other libraries and consortia in pursuit of these goals.


1. CAUL-CBUA endorses the International Coalition of Library Consortia (ICOLC) Statement of Current Perspectives and Preferred Practices for the Selection and Purchase of Electronic Information;
2. Licenses will be negotiated by the CAUL-CBUA manager on behalf of the members;
3. All changes to licenses and pricing must be agreed upon by members prior to
    completion of negotiations;
4. The CAUL-CBUA manager is authorized to sign digital license agreements on behalf
    of confirmed participating members, based on the negotiated terms;
5. Negotiation and implementation of site licenses will be based upon open, sound,
    accountable, and ethical procurement practices;
6. When a site license is selected as a CAUL-CBUA initiative, member libraries will
    suspend individual negotiations with vendors until the process is concluded.
    However, not all libraries must participate in any specific licensing initiative;
7. Members will be kept advised of the progress of specific licensing negotiations via
    a CAUL-CBUA mailing list;
8. Priority will be given to those initiatives that benefit the greatest number of members;
9. Negotiations will be undertaken by the CAUL-CBUA office when three or more
    members have expressed an interest in an electronic product;
10. Member libraries should have ample time for evaluative product trials;
11. Licensing initiatives may include other non-CAUL-CBUA libraries and consortia
    when it will maximize the benefit of the member libraries; and
12. All efforts will be made to obtain translations of licenses into French.

Funding, invoicing, and payment
Normally, the initial allocation of license costs among participating members will be based on full-time equivalent figures (FTE) except when it is agreed among the participants that FTE is not an appropriate methodology. Where FTE statistics are not appropriate and/or the database is not broad or of general interest, pricing should be based upon criteria more reflective of the user community or upon estimated or actual usage. As projects mature and use is demonstrated, subsequent license costs could be allocated on the basis of use in consultation with and the agreement of the participants.

Enrollment statistics
Enrollment statistics reported to the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) by the Association of Atlantic Universities (AAU) are used for electronic licensing purposes. Statistics are updated annually and are posted on the CAUL/CBUA website.

Revised and approved June 2015