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New York-based Columbia University has accused a company established by late historian Ehsan Yarshater of falsely claiming to be the copyright owner of the Encyclopedia Iranica, a scholarly resource on Persian and Iranian history.

The lawsuit, filed on Friday, August 9 at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, alleged that Encyclopedia Iranica Foundation (EIF), a company set up in 1990, had also claimed to be the exclusive owner of trademark rights in the name of the work and a logo.

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Welcome to the new NERL website!

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Welcome to the new NERL website! Since its inception in 1996 NERL has seen tremendous growth both in its membership and in the number of resources licensed.  What started as a consortium of 12 core members negotiating for few resources has grown to a consortium of 30 core members in negotiation with scores of resource providers. To reflect this growth NERL is rebranding with a new logo, and a renewed mission and vision. Why the change? At its inception all members of the NorthEast Research Libraries Consortium were, of course, in the North Eastern United States. Throughout the years institutions such as Stanford University, University of Notre Dame, Duke University, University of Miami and Vanderbilt University joined the consortium as core members. As such, the term “NorthEast” no longer correctly describes the consortium. Just as many other organizations have done – think of OCLC, JISC and NASIG- we to have gone to only an acronym – NERL.

The new NERL logo, which can be found on the upper left hand corner of the website, reflects the rebranding. The circling of the R and L now represent our focus on research libraries (and no longer on the NorthEast), and the nodes in the circle represent connections to each other and electronic resources. Along with the rebranding comes a new mission and vison:

Mission Statement: A national leader in negotiated licensing, NERL maximizes effective and sustainable access to content for its member institutions. By building and supporting alliances between higher education and the information industry, NERL serves as an advocate for the collective power and influence of academic libraries and their parent institutions.

Vision Statement: A unified force for change in the national and international scholarly communications landscape, NERL will stimulate and incubate innovative and transformative approaches to the global dissemination of knowledge.

With the changes in the scholarly communication ecosystem and the momentum within NERL it was time for the core membership to decide how it would see its mission and vision evolving over the next few years.

In that vein our core membership held a full day meeting in June of 2018 facilitated by Brian Schottlaender of re:work library consulting. The result was a document with a wealth of ideas, and new mission and vision statements. Throughout the day, we identified topics that required further engagement from the membership and establish committees to tackle these issues. The topics requiring more input were: improving communication inside and outside the organization, more effective means of negotiations, and deciding on whether NERL should pursue new types of resources. In the near future NERL will also be crafting its approach to open access and will be solidifying ways to work more closely with CRL in negotiating primary source materials.

Every few months you will see a new blog post from a NERL core member here on the landing page and a featured core member on the “Members” page. Featured as our first “Member Spotlight” is Joan Emmet from Yale University. Joan has played an integral part in NERL and we would like to shine a spotlight on her accomplishments.

Our momentum is stronger than ever and we have a lot to say about the changing nature of the scholarly world. Please stayed tuned in to our new site.

Gregory Eow Named New CRL President

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Gregory Eow, currently Associate Director for Collections, MIT Libraries, will succeed Bernard Reilly as president of the Center for Research Libraries, effective August 12, 2019. The appointment was announced by Virginia Steel, Norman and Armena Powell University Librarian, University of California, Los Angeles and Chair of CRL’s Board of Directors. Speaking on behalf of the board Ms. Steel said, “We are delighted that Greg Eow will become the next president of CRL. He brings deep knowledge of research libraries and collections and many ideas about ways CRL can evolve in the coming years to maintain its centrality as a key part of the research library landscape.”

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Rutgers Libraries Welcome Jeff Carroll as Assistant Vice President for Scholarly Communication and Collections

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Rutgers University Libraries are delighted to welcome Jeff Carroll as assistant vice president for scholarly communication and collections, effective July 15, 2019.

In this role, Carroll will provide leadership, strategic direction, and support for the Libraries’ scholarly communication and collections infrastructure, ensuring that our resources and services advance the unique missions of Rutgers–Camden, Rutgers–Newark, Rutgers–New Brunswick, and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences.

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University of California Cancels its Subscriptions to Elsevier Content

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As a leader in the global movement toward open access to publicly funded research, the University of California is taking a firm stand by deciding not to renew its subscriptions with Elsevier. Despite months of contract negotiations, Elsevier was unwilling to meet UC’s key goal: securing universal open access to UC research while containing the rapidly escalating costs associated with for-profit journals.

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Harvard Library and MIT Libraries provide recommendations for Plan S implementation

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Harvard Library and the MIT Libraries are committed to fostering a scholarly communications environment which advances the values of openness, equitable access, transparency, responsible stewardship, and flexible reuse. Aligned with these commitments, we are in broad support of Plan S and its goals to ensure that publicly funded research is made openly available to a global audience. We applaud the clear, unmistakable intention behind Plan S: to provide strong, meaningful incentives to make new research open access.

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Stanford University Statement on Patron Privacy and Database Access

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Many leading providers of digital content to libraries in North America are changing the way they provide access to library patrons. Instead of allowing anonymous access via well-established channels, these providers are increasingly seeking personally identifiable, individual patron data. Often these efforts to gather more patron data are bundled into efforts to “enhance” or modernize platforms as the sector moves towards single sign on, and away from traditional, IP-based access. The providers have many possible drivers to gather this data: personalization, analytics, marketing, et al.

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