Bibsam Consortium

Since 1996 the National Library of Sweden negotiates licence agreements for electronic information resources on behalf of Swedish universities, university colleges, as well as public agencies and research institutes.

95 organisations are a part of the Bibsam Consortium.

Since the Bibsam Consortium is not a legal body, the parties of an agreement are each individual organisation ("the Licensee"), and the vendor ("the Licensor"). A power of attorney from participating organisations allows the National Librarian to sign the agreements.


The National Library of Sweden has six members of staff dedicated to negotiate and administrate the 49 licence agreements for approximately 100 e-resource packages.

These include agreements with scholarly journal publishers as well as abstract and indexing databases, reference works and e-books.

The turnover is EUR 55 million (2022), and the 10 largest Universities account for 70% of the turnover.

Eight representatives (library directors and a vice-chancellor as chairperson) from the participating organisations form the Bibsam Consortium Steering Committee. The Steering Committee is focusing on developing strategies and overall principles regarding negotiations, price models and content.

Bibsam Consortium’s action plan 2022–2024

Research-intensive institutions with high publication volume see large price increases. The number of scientific articles increases year over year, both globally and in Sweden.

The global transition to a new publishing system is relatively slow. As a result, Swedish institutions will need to finance both the publication of open access articles and continued access to content behind paywalls for several more years.

  1. Continue to sign and follow up reading and publishing agreements for both hybrid and open access journals with a CC-BY licence.
  2. Sign more publishing agreements for fully open access journals.
  3. Explore and support alternative business models and publishing paths with learned societies/small publishers.
  4. Review copyright requirements to promote open access and support new ways of open publishing, such as immediate parallel publishing.


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