Campus Life

Texas A&M University Libraries Joins Statewide Coalition

The new organization seeks lower costs and wants to provide greater access to campus research.
By Patrick Zinn, Texas A&M University Libraries August 13, 2020

text reading "Texas LIbrary Coalition for United Action" on top of graphic of Texas
The coalition hopes to achieve an improved and sustainable model for the dissemination of scholarship through positive engagement and mutual understanding.

Courtesy photo


Texas A&M University joins 26 other Texas universities in establishing the Texas Library Coalition for United Action (TLCUA) with the goal of thinking creatively about access to faculty publications and the sustainability of journal subscriptions. The coalition hopes to change current models as well as the relationships between academic institutions and publishers.

Organizers say the sustainability of providing scholarly research at ever-increasing costs has forced academic libraries into difficult positions as they work to provide access to scholars on their campuses.

“The system of scholarly communications is extremely important and must be sustained, but we believe that it also needs to change to be more reflective of our research and educational mission,” said David Carlson, dean of University Libraries at Texas A&M.

Carlson has been an advocate for libraries to take concerted action to reduce costs and retain ownership of faculty work.

“We also believe that the economic models of commercial publishing must be more sustainable for libraries and reflect the transfer of materials to a digital networking platform,” Carlson said.

The coalition has begun by entering into conversations with academic publisher Elsevier. The group hopes to achieve an improved and sustainable model for the dissemination of scholarship through positive engagement and mutual understanding.

Technology has provided greater opportunities for a wider availability of resources, and the coalition wants those opportunities to be reflected in agreements that will benefit all academic libraries, Carlson said.

“Due to its size, diversity and commitment to collaboration, we believe this coalition in Texas has a unique and compelling opportunity to effect change and assume a leadership position in the world-wide movement tor change in scholarly communications,” he said.

Elsevier has recently been involved in a number of negotiations with U.S. universities, including the University of California system, California State University, Carnegie Mellon University, Louisiana State University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Washington University in St. Louis.

The coalition institutions collectively have more than 397,000 students and 25,000 faculty, and their Elsevier subscriptions represent a significant investment at more than $17 million. By these and other measures, the coalition represents one of the largest and most diverse U.S. collective negotiation consortia of its kind.

The current members of the Texas Library Coalition for Collective Action are:

Angelo State University

Baylor University

Lamar University

Prairie View A&M University

Rice University

Sam Houston State University

Stephen F. Austin University

Sul Ross State University

Tarleton State University

Texas A&M International University

Texas A&M University

Texas A&M University-Central Texas

Texas A&M University-Commerce

Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi

Texas A&M University-Kingsville

Texas A&M University-San Antonio

Texas A&M University-Texarkana

Texas State University

Texas Tech University

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Lubbock

University of Dallas

University of Houston

University of Houston Clear Lake

University of Houston Downtown

The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

West Texas A&M University

Media contact: Patrick Zinn, director of marketing for Texas A&M University Libraries, 979-845-4265,

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