Ask Your Librarian to Subscribe to PhilPapers!

PhilPapers now has almost 1.75 million entries.  Like the Stanford Encyclopedia, the project is non-profit and largely run by volunteers.  In order to be sustainable, they do need funding.  And like the Stanford Encyclopedia, they are asking for our help: so ask your library to subscribe!

The merger of Philosophy Research Index into PhilPapers has now been completed. More than half a million items have been added to the PhilPapers index, greatly improving our coverage of older publications and print publications not available online. At 1.75M items, our index is now three times the size of the nearest commercial alternative. We thank our colleagues at the Philosophy Documentation Center for their ceaseless efforts to collect relevant data.

We have also implemented new automatic classification mechanisms. Approximately 2/3 of all index entries (1.1M) now have some classification information associated with them. About half of the new entries from PRI have been automatically categorized. These results are now going through a process of manual curation by subject editors, to double-check categorization choices and more finely assign subject descriptors to published works.

The categorization of all listings in this growing database remains a work in progress. But with over one million categorized entries and 5000 bibliographies already included, PhilPapers is easily the largest bibliography of philosophical works ever created. We are grateful for the impressive work done by our 600 subject editors.

PhilPapers is more complete, more accessible, and less expensive than any commercial alternative. But we have significant costs to cover, and we need to be realistic about finances to sustain access for everyone. Our subscription program for large institutional users is progressing well. Among the institutions with the heaviest use of PhilPapers, more than half have subscribed. We much appreciate this strong support and encourage all large institutional users to participate in like manner. This will ensure the budget we need to cover costs, with maximum access and improving functionality.

If your university has not subscribed, you might see a message to this effect at the top of the screen when you visit the PhilPapers site. We are also implementing banners with associated delays (roughly 5 seconds once per day) for users from major non-subscribing institutions. While PhilPapers remains accessible for all users, the delays and their frequency may increase in the future. Please encourage your library to subscribe, so we can sustain and improve this essential resource. We provide contact details of librarians on this page.

Good job, and thank you, PhilPapers and especially David Bourget and Dave Chalmers!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *