NISO Working Group Releases SERU 0.9 Draft for Pilot Use in E-Resource Transactions

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The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) Shared E-Resource Understanding (SERU) Working Group has made available a new 0.9 draft of SERU on the NISO Web site.

This latest version of the Shared Electronic Resource Understanding presents a set of statements publishers and libraries can choose to use for sales of electronic content. SERU offers libraries and publishers an alternative to the often-burdensome process of bilateral negotiation of a formal license agreement. Libraries and publishers can use SERU to transact a sale of e-resources without a license if both parties feel their perception of risk has been adequately addressed by current law and developing norms of behavior within the publisher and library communities. Libraries and publishers can notify serials vendors of their willingness to work with SERU thereby allowing vendors to more easily mediate such subscription sales.

SERU 0.9 includes guidelines for implementation and the working group’s Web site includes new FAQs to assist users of the statements. NISO is maintaining a list of libraries and publishers who wish to announce their interest in using SERU for pilot transactions. To join the registry or see the list of current trial participants visit

Previous drafts of SERU have generated considerable interest among publishers and librarians and the current SERU document reflects the many comments they have made. The SERU Working Group continues to welcome comments on the draft document and encourages their submission to Karla Hahn ( or Judy Luther (, the working group co-chairs, or any other member of the working group.

The SERU project maintains an informational e-mail list to share information on project developments. SERU 0.9 and further information on the SERU Working Group can be found at

The NISO SERU Working Group was formed in late 2006 following a development meeting supported by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers (ALPSP), the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC), and the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP).

For more information contact:

Karla Hahn

Director, Office of Scholarly Communication

Association of Research Libraries

(202) 296-2296 ext. 112