Journal Collection Development Overview

Project MUSE has a limited number of openings for new journal titles each year, and generally receives many more applications than can be accommodated. As a rule, MUSE is looking for humanities and social science titles that have demonstrated broad appeal, as reflected in existing institutional subscriptions, inclusion in selective indexes and bibliographies, and strong editorial boards. MUSE is also interested in more narrowly focused journals that can complement our existing holdings and add depth in our core subject areas.

From time to time, MUSE may seek assistance from subject specialists in developing our title list in specific disciplines. If you would be interested in volunteering for such projects, please send an email outlining your experience and area of expertise to our Collection Development staff. Librarians and scholars are also encouraged to Recommend a Journal for inclusion in MUSE; please review the following information thoroughly before submitting a recommendation to ensure that the journal meets our collection development criteria.

Project MUSE Journal Collection Development Policy: Overview of Basic Principles

Project MUSE is an interdisciplinary collection of journals in the arts, humanities, and social sciences. In order to set reasonable price increases and not dilute the publisher royalty pool, Project MUSE limits the number of new titles joining each year. The MUSE Collection Development Team follows these basic principles when selecting new titles.

MUSE seeks to create a well-balanced, interdisciplinary collection including well-established titles of broad interest and more specialized titles in specific subject areas for which Project MUSE is best known. The MUSE collection development policy will continue to develop through research of scholarship in different subject areas, analysis of data on academic programs and degrees awarded, and discussions with librarians, scholars, and MUSE publishers.

Project MUSE prefers to add well-established journals which are widely indexed and widely held. However, adding more specialized, less widely held journals is desirable in order to provide depth and synergy in specific higher priority fields.

While MUSE's licenses with its content providers are non-exclusive, MUSE aims to limit duplication of new content in competing products to make MUSE more valuable to subscribers.

Deserving start-up titles and older, but less-well-established, titles can join the MUSE Premium Collection through the fixed-royalty program, which debuted in 2008. The goal of this program is to provide a price-neutral means of increasing the exposure and readership of these titles without negatively impacting royalties of existing titles. Start-up journals should have solid editorial boards, solid funding, and appropriate subject matter.

Project MUSE is unable to include journals which are freely available online. MUSE does not want to charge its library customers for content that they can get for free elsewhere on the Internet. Also, Project MUSE is unable to include journals published by for-profit companies. This policy stems from MUSE's mission, part of which is to help non-profit publishers and independent journals continue to provide affordable content to scholars and libraries.