European partners explore cross-border licences

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Knowledge Exchange – an umbrella organisation for four national ICT bodies – has begun a multinational tender process to explore with publishers the possibility of cross-border licensing arrangements.

National licensing agreements for online resources are already well-established in the UK, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands, which are the four countries involved. The aim of the initiative is to explore whether further economies of scale can be secured and new and innovative business models developed through an international approach.

Publishers are being invited to submit initial proposals concerning possible business models for cross-border licences. Following this stage, representatives of the four organisations – JISC in the UK, Denmark’s Electronic Research Library (DEFF), the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the SURF Foundation in the Netherlands – will meet with chosen publishers to develop proposals further.

Exploring new and innovative licensing models and platforms for research is one of the goals of Knowledge Exchange. Lorraine Estelle, CEO of JISC Collections, said: ‘This is an important and exciting development not only for the millions of users of online content in our four countries but also for publishers. The possibilities for international cooperation in this area are immense and we hope this will be only the start of closer collaboration and further developments to come.’