The CARLI E-Resources program provides a wide array of electronic resources and services that make it possible for member libraries to expand and enhance their collections in a more efficient and affordable manner.

The goals of the CARLI E-Resources program are to:

  • Reduce e-resource costs for members
  • Increase the breadth and coverage of collections
  • Purchase materials of lasting value for our members

The CARLI Electronic Resources Licensing Principles outline the philosophical assumptions that provide the foundation for the CARLI Electronic Resources program. These principles guide CARLI’s efforts in negotiating with publishers and vendors for a wide variety of electronic content on behalf of the membership.

CARLI-Funded Resources

The program provides complimentary access to core electronic resources for the benefit of all CARLI members. CARLI-funded resources include content to which CARLI has perpetual rights, and databases licensed as annual subscriptions.  

Annual Subscriptions

CARLI pays the full annual subscription cost for these e-resources for all Governing member libraries:

  • EBSCO Academic Search Complete
  • EBSCO Business Source Elite

In addition, EBSCO provides access to the following databases at no direct cost to members:

  • Consumer Health Complete
  • ERIC
  • Health Source: Consumer Edition
  • Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition
  • MasterFILE Premier
  • MAS Ultra: School Edition
  • Military and Government Collection
  • Newspaper Source
  • Primary Search
  • Professional Development Collection
  • Regional Business News

Permanent Acquisitions

The program acquires Permanent Acquisitions that are available at no cost to Governing member libraries.

  • Harper’s Weekly, 1857-1912
  • Illinois Digital Sanborn Maps
  • Saskia Fine Art Images
  • Springer Medicine E-books (2005-2010)
  • Sage E-Journal 2007 Deep Journal Backfile Collection
  • Historical Statistics of the United States
  • Sage E-Reference Collection (Sage Knowledge)–Libraries wanting continued access need to pay an annual access fee beginning in FY20
  • Women and Social Movements in the U.S.–Libraries wanting continued access need to pay an annual access fee beginning in FY20
  • Black Thought and Culture–Libraries wanting continued access need to pay an annual access fee beginning in FY20

Database Brokering

CARLI contracts with commercial database providers to supply members with discounted pricing for a broad range of indexing, abstracting, and full text databases to support their individual curricular and research needs. 95% of CARLI libraries participate in the E-Resources brokering, with $14.2 million in subscriptions in FY 2018.

Member libraries pay only the subscription costs for their selected resources, with no service fees or restrictions on participation. CARLI assumes the costs associated with:

  • Centralized licensing;
  • Centralized member billing; and
  • Member support and vendor liaison services.

How to Participate

All Governing Members may participate in CARLI E-Resources Brokering. For additional information about CARLI E-Resources, visit the Frequently Asked Questions page. For information about the database brokering program or becoming a CARLI member, contact the


CARLI staff conduct basic training sessions for participating libraries, as well as other educational programming related to e-resources. Information about upcoming training sessions and events is available from the CARLI calendar; from the E-Resources Contacts email list; and from the Collections and Content interest group email list.  

March 26, 2019 Usage Statistics Forum

E-Resources Webinars

CARLI staff and the E-Resources Working Group host webinars on E-Resources topics of general interest. All member library staff are welcome and encouraged to attend. Topics include Usage Statistics for Electronic Resources: Beyond the Alphabet Soup,  Introduction to License Agreement Review, and License Negotiate Strategies and Tactics.

Technical Assistance

Content provided through the E- Resources program is hosted on vendor-maintained platforms, with the exception of Saskia Fine Art Images, and the Illinois Digital Sanborn Maps, which are hosted on the CARLI Digital Collections server.

CARLI staff are available to assist with technical issues you may be experiencing with your electronic resources. We can contact the CARLI e-resources vendors on your behalf, help with access issues or questions, and notify vendors of IP range changes. For assistance,

VPAT Repository

The Commercial Products Committee, in conjunction with CARLI staff, has created a page devoted to providing links to or copies of the current VPAT (Voluntary Product Assessment Template) information for all CARLI vendors. This page provides important information for evaluating efforts being made by vendors toward ADA Accessibility.