Does Urquhart's Law hold for consortial use of electronic journals?

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Tonta Y. A., ÜNAL Y.

SCIENTOMETRICS, vol.83, no.3, pp.793-808, 2010 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 83 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2010
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s11192-009-0156-1
  • Journal Name: SCIENTOMETRICS
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.793-808
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


This paper tests the validity of Urquhart's Law ("the inter-library loan demand for a periodical is as a rule a measure of its total use"). It compares the use of print journals at the Turkish Academic Network and Information Center (ULAKBIM) with the consortial use of the same journals in their electronic form by the individual libraries making up the Consortium of Turkish University Libraries (ANKOS). It also compares the on-site use of electronic journals at ULAKBIM with their consortial use at ANKOS. About 700 thousand document delivery, in-house and on-site use data and close to 28 million consortial use data representing seven years' worth of downloads of full-text journal articles were used. Findings validate Urquhart's Law in that a positive correlation was observed between the use of print journals at ULAKBIM and the consortial use of their electronic copies at ANKOS. The on-site and consortial use of electronic journals was also highly correlated. Both print and electronic journals that were used most often at ULAKBIM tend to get used heavily by the member libraries of ANKOS consortium, too. Findings can be used in developing consortial collection management policies and negotiate better consortial licence agreements.