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
  • Simplify invoicing and billing for libraries and vendors
  • 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.

Vendors interested in working with CARLI should first review CARLI's E-Resources Brokering Values.

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 includes access to the following databases at no direct cost to members:

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

Permanent Acquisitions

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

  • Harper’s Weekly, 1857-1912
  • Illinois Digital Sanborn Maps
  • Mary Ann Liebert journals (2005-2009)
  • 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)–Annual access fee (paid for by libraries) beginning in FY20 to continue access 
  • Women and Social Movements in the U.S.–Annual access fee (paid for by libraries) beginning in FY20 to continue access
  • Black Thought and Culture–Annual access fee (paid for by libraries) beginning in FY20 to continue access

Database Brokering

CARLI contracts with commercial database providers to supply members with discounted pricing for a broad range of library resources to support their individual curricular and research needs. 97% of CARLI Governing member libraries participate in e-resources brokering, amounting to nearly $16 million in subscriptions in for 2020.

Member libraries pay only the subscription costs for 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 on becoming a CARLI member, contact the


CARLI staff conduct training sessions for participating libraries, as well as other educational programming specifically 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.  

September 12, 2022 E-Resources Overview Webinar

August 8, 2022 Alexander Street @Your Library

March 26, 2019 Usage Statistics Forum

April 6, 2022 Accessibility Forum

E-Resources Webinars

CARLI staff and the Commercial Products Committee host webinars on E-Resources topics of general interest. All member library staff are welcome to attend. Past topics have included usage statistics for electronic resources, license agreement review, and license negotiation strategies.

Technical Assistance

Content provided through the E- Resources program is hosted on vendor-maintained platforms. CARLI digital collections, such as Saskia Fine Art Images and the Illinois Digital Sanborn Maps, are hosted a ContentDM server by OCLC.

CARLI staff are available to assist with technical issues relating to your electronic resources brokered through CARLI. We can contact 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) documents for all CARLI vendors. This page provides important information for evaluating efforts being made by vendors toward accessibility.