RLI 282 ARL Library Budgets after the Great Recession, 2011–13 5 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC 2013 In FY11–12, four years after the initial fiscal 2008 collapse, 52% of respondents reported flat or declining acquisition budgets. There were 19 libraries (20%) that reported increases of 3% or less, and that means that purchasing capacity was not keeping up with inflation. Taken together these figures mean that 72% of the ARL library acquisition budgets reflected a reduced access to information on campus. In FY12– 13 there is a trend toward some improvement. The number of member libraries unable to keep up with inflation had declined to 58%. Or to put it positively, 42% received acquisition increases greater than 3%, albeit some sectors of the industry increased prices faster still. Turning to the topic of administrative budgets, it is important to note that the HEPI has over the long- term inflated faster than the CPI, effectively nullifying small increases in library administrative budgets that have personnel costs as their largest component. “HEPI is a more accurate indicator of changes in costs for colleges and universities than the more familiar Consumer Price Index. It measures the average relative level of prices in a fixed basket of goods and services purchased by colleges and universities each year through current fund educational and general expenditures, excluding research.”6 During the period since 2008 while administrative budgets were being battered, HEPI continued increasing (see Figure 4).7 Figure 4. Comparison of HEPI and CPI 2008–2012 HEPI CPI 2008 2010 2009 2011 2012 4% 5% 3% 2% 1% 0% 5% 2.3% .9% 2.3% 1.7% 3.7% 1.4% 1% 2% 2.9%
Previous Page Next Page