Comparing numbers makes things look more real and proportionate: Elsevier vs Greece

Elsevier has published its annual business report.

Heather Morrison’s summary: « Before adjusting for currency, Elsevier is reporting a 4% decrease in revenue for Scientific, Technical and Medicine and a 3% decrease in profit. The numbers are a 2,048 GBP revenue, 762 GBP adjusted operating profit, for a 37% profit rate (down from 39% last year). Elsevier is counting both revenue and profit as a slight increase after adjusting for currency ».

I am often told that researchers do not realize how unjustly expensive their own work is predated upon, legally and with their full consent. I even read lately that we should « stop bothering academics and publishers about a
library-made problem » (Thomas Krichel, here). I am not a librarian. I don’t consider this outrageous profit a library-made problem. It is everyone’s problem and specifically all researchers’ problem.

Circumstances put things sometimes in a better perspective, just by chance. Isn’t it amazing to compare Elsevier’s 1.07 billion € profit built upon worldwide research fundings (a 37% benefit margin out of a 2.88 billion € revenue) with Greece’s  1.4 billion € national unpaid debt to the IMF ?

What on earth are we talking about ?

Will mankind come to their senses…?

Un commentaire sur “Comparing numbers makes things look more real and proportionate: Elsevier vs Greece

  1. ^Simone Jérôme

    At first I was shocked by Thomas Krichel’s position about ‘a library made problem’ but reading carefully his post, i think it is very close to a position I defended when I was in charge of a library. He pleads, as I did, for no boycott of publishing but for a radical subscription boycott. Then with the money saved, the launching of open access journals at fair prices would be if not easy at least possible. Are the conservative forces still present in research ready to make such a jump ? I doubt. But we may work to such an end.


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