Shared Print Archive Network (SPAN)

Council of Prairie and Pacific University Libraries (COPPUL) Shared Print Archive Network (SPAN)

The SFU Library is participating in this western Canadian collaboration to collectively manage the preservation of print volumes. This initiative, along with other multi-institutional print management programs around the world, is primarily founded on three realities:

  1. the recognition that much electronic text is stable, of high quality and provides the benefit of flexible access to scholarly literature without the restrictions of time or place,
  2. the reality of library space needs and limits as well as the cost of preservation, and,
  3. the ability to easily locate and deliver if needed, a copy of a print volume within the network.

COPPUL SPAN's main goals are to provide access to shared print archives, create opportunities for the reallocation of library space, and preserve the print record for its members in a cost effective way.

Phase 1&2

There are 3,099 journals being archived by members of the program (called 'archive holders'). An archive holder agrees to keep its print holdings of specific titles for a specified period of time (a minimum of 10 years). This allows other members of COPPUL SPAN to consider disposing of their holdings for titles that are being archived in this way.

The SFU Library has agreed to be an archive holder for 264 of these journal titles. Of the over 2,800 titles that are being archived by other COPPUL SPAN members, we will remove print holdings from the collection if: 1) our subscription was migrated to an online only subscription;  2) we have an electronic version with post-cancellation access rights; and knowing that 3) another university library in western Canada is keeping a print copy, which could either be scanned and delivered or borrowed if needed. 

Removal of print volumes matching the considerations above will take place throughout the Fall of 2015. We estimate that SFU has between 600 and 700 titles that will be removed.