The Transfer project was initiated by UKSG in 2006 in response to issues identified by the scholarly communications community when journal titles change platform providers or owners. In the first ten months of 2006, EBSCO logged over 5,000 titles that changed publishers. Such transfers can negatively impact libraries, intermediaries (such as serials subscription agents, link resolver administrators, and vendors of large-scale discovery systems), and readers. Often the journal would seem to disappear and links from existing information systems to the content would break, even though the title was still being published.
A Working Group was formed with representatives from libraries, publishers, intermediaries such as periodicals subscription agents and other parties relevant to the scholarly journal supply chain. The Transfer Working Group’s objective was to develop procedures and policies surrounding the transfer of journals between publishers so that the movement of journals causes the minimum disruption to stakeholders and adheres to an agreed-upon Code of Practice.