Publishers and the British Library agree framework licence agreement for document delivery outside the UK to non-commercial researchers

The British Library and the International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical Publishers (STM) have agreed a framework licence agreement to be entered into directly between individual publishers and the British Library. It governs the supply of copies of articles from the British Library’s Document Supply Service to non-commercial end users via not-for-profit libraries outside the UK. The UK Publishers Association joins with STM in recommending the framework licence agreement to its members.

Barry Smith, Head of Commercial Services at the British Library said “We are delighted to have agreed a framework licence with STM. This means we can improve the speed of service delivery we offer to our overseas non-commercial users and augment our current Document Supply Service.”

Any articles to be supplied under this new service are solely for an end-user’s own private study or non-commercial research purposes. The terms of the licence are distinct from the Library’s successful service for the supply of articles for commercial purposes, and shall require end-users and not-for-profit libraries to ensure that the differentiation between commercial and non-commercial use is actively monitored and differentiated. The framework licence agreement will start from 1st January 2012.

“We are pleased to have worked so successfully with the British Library to reach this agreement,” said Michael Mabe, CEO of the International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical Publishers (STM). “The British Library framework licence will give publishers, including our members, contractual control over the international cross-border delivery of copies from their material via an established and respected document supply service. It will also allow the British Library to improve the service, and delivery times, available to its authorised users.”

Along with STM, the UK Publishers Association is also recommending that its member publishers participate in the framework settlement. “The framework licence agreed with the British Library offers a balanced model for well-regulated licensed document delivery across international borders for non-commercial use,” said Graham Taylor, Director, The Publishers Association.

The British Library’s Overseas Library Privilege Service will be phased out from the start of 2012.

The British Library will contact all existing licensors of STM content it currently has a direct digital agreement with and who are yet to sign the framework licence agreement. The British Library will also contact all non-UK, non-commercial libraries currently registered to discuss eligibility for the new service and how to proceed.

Notes to Editors:

For more information:

STM and British Library would request that any questions regarding the new service should be sent to either:

British Library Customer Services
The British Library
Boston Spa
West Yorkshire LS23 7BQ
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)1937 546060
E-mail: customer-services@bl.uk


International Association of Scientific, Technical & Medical Publishers (STM)
Prama House
267 Banbury Road
Oxford OX2 7HT
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 1865 339323


E-mail: beadle@stm-assoc.org

For further information:
Director of Educational, Academic and Professional Publishing
The Publishers Association
29B Montague Street
London WC1B 5BW
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0) 207 691 9191

Any publisher wishing to sign up to the BL / International STM / Publishers Association Framework Agreement should contact:

British Library Licensing Team
The British Library
Boston Spa
West Yorkshire
LS23 7BQ
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)1937 546686

E-mail: PublisherLicensing@bl.uk

For more information contact:

  • Miki Lentin
  • The British Library
  • t:+44 (0) 20 7412 7112
  • m:+44 (0) 7976 793 666
  • f:+44 (0) 20 7412 7168
  • e: miki.lentin@bl.uk


The British Library is the national library of the United Kingdom and one of the world's greatest research libraries. It provides world class information services to the academic, business, research and scientific communities and offers unparalleled access to the world's largest and most comprehensive research collection. The Library's collection has developed over 250 years and exceeds 150 million separate items representing every age of written civilisation and includes books, journals, manuscripts, maps, stamps, music, patents, photographs, newspapers and sound recordings in all written and spoken languages. Up to 10 million people visit the British Library website - www.bl.uk - every year where they can view up to 4 million digitised collection items and over 40 million pages.  

The Publishers Association is the leading trade organisation serving book, journal, audio and electronic publishers in the UK. Membership is comprised of 116 companies from across the trade, academic and education sectors.  Its core service is representation and lobbying, around copyright, rights and other matters relevant to members, who represent roughly 80% of the industry by turnover. For more information, visit: www.publishers.org.uk  

STM is the leading global trade association for academic and professional publishers. It has over 110 members in 21 countries who each year collectively publish nearly 66% of all journal articles and tens of thousands of monographs and reference works. STM members include learned societies, university presses, private companies, new starts and established players. For more information, visit: www.stm-assoc.org 



Download everything on this page (zip format)

Related Media


Press Office Contact

Press Office:
+ 44 (0) 20 7412 7110

Out of Hours:
+44 (0) 20 7412 7150


Subscribe to our latest news   rss

The British Library Privacy Policy Statement

Follow Us

BritishLibrary Facebook BritishLibrary YouTube BritishLibrary Flicker BritishLibrary AudioBoo



delicious digg reddit