International Guidelines for Journal
This document has been developed to meet the
needs of academic organisations in the Middle East putting substantial
numbers of research and scholarly serials out to tender with a single
vendor. Its purpose is to advise librarians and serials vendors of good
practice in this area. A specific aim of this document is to highlight and
thus hopefully reduce, the instances of the fraudulent supply of serials -
especially the supply of subscriptions ordered from publishers at the
personal rate and supplied to libraries at the institutional rate
Period of Subscription & Supply
The period of subscription must be a calendar year, starting on the 1st
January and ending on 31st December each year. The subscribing organization
(the Client) must deliver the subscription orders to the Supplier (the
person or company acting as a subscription agent to the Client) not later
than November (at least one month, preferably two before the start of the
subscription year), to enable time for the Supplier to place orders with the
Publishers and for the Publishers to process and deliver the first issue of
the new subscription year
The Supply Period will be 18 months,
starting in January each year, until 30 June in the following
subscription year to enable any late journals to be supplied within the
contract and to minimize any problems with the postal service.
The Supply Period can be extended with the official
approval of the Client. The Supplier will use their best endeavours to
handle and supply any missing issues
The Supplier must enter all subscriptions in the name of the
Client to the Publishers (including scientific societies).
The Supplier must submit to the Client proof that
subscriptions were implemented in the Clients name with the Publishers. This
can be in the form of a copy pro-forma invoice or subscription code number.
Any misuse of the client organization’s name must be avoided.
Consolidation services should supply the Client’s details to
the publisher where required to enable access to the electronic component of
Institutional Subscription & Personal
The Supplier will confirm to the Client that the subscription was ordered at
the Publishers’ ‘Institutional Subscription Rate’ and not at the ‘Personal
It is strictly forbidden to take out
personal subscriptions on behalf of the Client organization at the Personal
Subscription Rate. All subscriptions must be entered at the Institutional
If illegal personal subscriptions are
implemented then the Supplier and Client organization will be notified to
the Publisher/s as performing a potentially illegal transaction. This
information will be disseminated to:
ASA: Association of Subscription Agents and
IPA: International Publishers Association
International authorities concerned with intellectual
All Suppliers who are members of the Association of
Subscription Agents and Intermediaries are required to sign a declaration
that they will provide the highest standards of professional ethics, and
respect the subscription rates set by Publishers especially for
The Supplier must have a ‘plan of action’ to enable a
minimum of 90% of any supply operation involving subscriptions to be
delivered within the contracted period. The aim is always to supply 100%.
The Supplier must ensure that all journal prices are clearly
shown on information provided to the Client
The Supplier must inform the Client of any changes to the
required journals, especially:
Current Journals are those with a starting subscription date
outside the calendar year. If a Client organization is late with their
ordering i.e. the order is received by the Supplier after November 30, the
result may be the creation of many Current Journals which may run outside
the calendar year i.e. from February to January or March to February etc
depending on the Publishers policy with respect to those journals
Supplier must inform the Client Organization of any such Current Journals
which will run outside the calendar year. Within one week, the client
organization must decide either to accept the non-calendar year subscription
or cancel these Current Journals. The Supplier cannot be held responsible
for such changes of subscription period when they arise from late
subscription procedures by the Client Organization.
The Supplier must inform the Client of any suspended journals
with proof from the publisher and also refund the full subscription price of
the suspended journals or that part of the subscription which will be
The Supplier will provide the Client with a report
every 3 months (or as agreed with the Client) for all subscriptions showing:
Subscriptions already ordered.
Claims for missing issues, action taken and the expected time to completion
of such claims.
Additional information may also be shown as agreed between Client and
Supplier will provide any free supplements to subscribed journals to the
Client, or any free issues or newsletters.
Supplier must provide electronic access for the Client organization where
the Publisher supplies free electronic access to their journals, or where
the subscription is to an electronic journal. The Supplier must also
supply the subscription code and number to enable the publisher and Client
to set up electronic access
The Supplier will agree with the Client the Reporting
Period for reporting the status of subscriptions. These should generally
be biweekly or monthly but other periods may be agreed between the parties
The Supplier must reply within one week to any official
correspondence from the Client Organization.
The Supplier may arrange meetings with the Client
Organization to provide updates and to solve any problems raised on a
regular schedule eg bi-monthly
The Client shall make all claims for missing issues and/or
access denials through the Supplier.
The Supplier will submit information about the employees
engaged on the Clients account to the Client. The employee's information
must contain: Name, Job Title, Telephone, Fax and Email numbers and
address. The Supplier will report any changes in the employees engaged on
the Clients account.
The Supplier will contact the Client in September each year
for the renewal operation so as to be sure that the subscriptions are made
in due time, and to avoid any Current Journals.
Advance payment in full (100%) must be delivered from the
Client to the Supplier in a timely manner to ensure no loss of continuity
and the absence of Current Journals. The advance payment may be less than
100% by agreement between the Client Organization and Supplier.
The ASA (Association of Subscription Agents and
Intermediaries) strongly recommend Client organizations pay the agreed
advance payment promptly and in full, otherwise the Supplier may be unable
to pay many publishers in time to open subscriptions for the Client. This
can ‘open the door’ for an unscrupulous Supplier to supply what he likes
and ignore those journals for which there is marginal profit in their
supply. Prepayment by an agreed date by the Client to the Supplier
prevents such problems from arising in the first place.
The Client organization must evaluate, on an annual basis,
the Supplier operation and service, and advise the Supplier in good time
whether they wish to renew with the Supplier’s organization again, or
The ASA does not advise renewing a contract with any
supplier who delivers less than 80% of the subscriptions in the contract
unless good reason can be shown for the non-supply such as ceased journals
and problems due to late payments from the Client resulting in
subscriptions required outside the contract period.