Consortial Arrangement Results in High-Yield Cost Avoidance

Author Information
Author(s): 
Tana Bishop
Author(s): 
University of Maryland University College
Institution(s) or Organization(s) Where EP Occurred: 
The Virtual Library of Virginia
Effective Practice Abstract/Summary
Abstract/Summary of Effective Practice: 

Virtual Library of Virginia, a statewide consortia, makes arrangements for virtual libraries to increase access, improve learning opportunities for students and faculty, and achieve cost savings.

Description of the Effective Practice
Description of the Effective Practice: 

Cost effective aspects of online environment: The 39 state-supported colleges and universities in the Commonwealth of Virginia formed a consortium to utilize technology as a way of improving faculty and staff productivity while enhancing student learning and lowering costs. Group purchase and sharing of online library resources achieved cost savings and improved library services.

Supporting Information for this Effective Practice
Evidence of Effectiveness: 

Over an eight-year period (1994-2002), the consortium of libraries in Virginia (VIVA) has been able to achieve around $74.5 million in cost avoidance by coordinating and sharing online library resources throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. In other words, if the 39 state-supported colleges and universities had to obtain the same level of resources independently of one another, the costs would have increased by more than $74 million. This practice of cooperatively purchasing electronic resources has resulted in cost savings from 8-79% off list prices.

Estimate the probable costs associated with this practice: 

Funding for the VIVA initiative comes primarily from the Virginia General Assembly, with additional money derived from local college/university library budgets and grants. For the two year period 200-2002, the total funding was $10.7 million.

Contact(s) for this Effective Practice
Effective Practice Contact: 
Kathy Perry, VIVA Director
Email this contact: 
kperry@gmu.edu