Elsevier and Higher Education Commission of Pakistan Sign Agreement on access to scientific, technical and medical information

New Delhi, May 6, 2005 – Elsevier, a world-leading healthcare and scientific publisher, recently signed an agreement with the Higher Education Commission of the Government of Pakistan to enable thirty premier universities in Pakistan to receive access to ScienceDirect, the world's largest electronic collection of science, technology and medicine full text and bibliographic information. The agreement, the first of its kind in Pakistan, is part of the country’s recent focus on growth and development of its science and technology research sector.

Kamran Naim, Digital Library Country Coordinator, who, along with Dr. Atta-ur-Rahman, Federal Minister & Chairman, of the Higher Education Commission, was responsible for moving the agreement forward, comments: “Inclusion of Science Direct content in the Digital Library Program is a major development in the strategy of the science and technology research sector expansion project. Our review of the information requirements of the higher education sector in late 2003 spotlighted the significant demand for Elsevier journals within the research community. The opportunity for the consortium of 30 leading public-sector universities in Pakistan to gain access to ScienceDirect is unparalleled. We acknowledge the cooperation of colleagues within Elsevier in working with us to make access to this essential information resource financially sustainable in future years.”

The Higher Education Commission team is now undertaking to promote the use of ScienceDirect, hosting a workshop in Islamabad which focused on its features and functionality and providing background and insight into the Elsevier publication process. Working closely with the HEC to ensure that potential users have the knowledge to take full advantage of this new service, Elsevier will offer a comprehensive training program on the ScienceDirect platform to librarians and researchers country-wide.

Access to ScienceDirect has been very warmly received by universities in Pakistan, with acclaim accorded specifically to the user-friendliness of the Science Direct interface, the powerful search functionality that it offers, as well as its ‘Online Tutorials’ feature.

Observes Pascal van den Nieuwendijk, Elsevier’s Regional Sales Manager, “Elsevier is extremely pleased with this consortium offering in Pakistan. Now 30 key universities in Pakistan are able to step into their Digital Library and have access to a considerable number of key Elsevier titles. This gives students and researchers in these institutes instant access to the developments in many research areas, connecting them to the global scientific community through the click of a mouse. We at Elsevier are certainly looking forward to a fruitful relationship with HEC and the university libraries.”

###

About the Higher Education Commission (HEC)

The Higher Education Commission of the Government of Pakistan has been set up to facilitate the development of the universities of Pakistan to be world-class centres of education, research and development. The mandate of the HEC encompasses all degree-granting universities and institutions, public and private, including degree granting colleges and supports the attainment of quality education in these institutions by facilitating and co-ordinating self-assessment of academic programs and their external review by national and international experts. The HEC also supervises the planning, development and accreditation of public and private sector institutions of higher education.

The HEC intends to play its part in spearheading the building of a knowledge based economy in Pakistan. Key issues are the quality of education imparted to the graduate and its relevance to the economy. A well-educated graduate is the building block of a knowledge based economy, and it is for this reason that the HEC is focusing on the quality of higher education.

About ScienceDirect®

Over a quarter of the world’s full-text scientific, technical and medical (STM) articles – managed by renowned editors, written by respected authors and read by researchers from around the globe – are available in one place: ScienceDirect. Elsevier’s extensive and unique full text collection covers authoritative titles from the core scientific literature including high impact factor titles such as The Lancet, Cell and Tetrahedron. Over 6 million articles are available online, including Articles in Press which offer rapid access to recently accepted manuscripts.

The critical mass of information available on ScienceDirect is unsurpassed. Coverage includes over 2,000 journals published by Elsevier and dynamic linking to journals from approximately 170 leading STM publishers through CrossRef. An expanding suite of scientific full-text content in a rich linking environment provides subscribers with increasingly flexible and extensive access to the world's published STM literature. An expanding program of online major reference works and book series in all fields of science seamlessly interlinks with primary research referenced in journal articles.

About Elsevier
Elsevier is a world-leading provider of information solutions that enhance the performance of science, health, and technology professionals, empowering them to make better decisions, deliver better care, and sometimes make groundbreaking discoveries that advance the boundaries of knowledge and human progress. Elsevier provides web-based, digital solutions — among them ScienceDirect, Scopus, Research Intelligence and ClinicalKey— and publishes over 2,500 journals, including The Lancet and Cell, and more than 35,000 book titles, including a number of iconic reference works. Elsevier is part of RELX Group, a world-leading provider of information and analytics for professional and business customers across industries. www.elsevier.com

Contact:

Padma Muralidaharan

+91 11 2644 7160-64 x212

p.muralidharan@elsevier.com