fees for data

Daniel Janzen djanzen at SAS.UPENN.EDU
Mon Jan 30 13:38:34 CST 1995

29 January 1995
Costa Rica

Robin Panza  panzar at CLP2.CLPGH.ORG   writes

>One suggestion that has been circulating in the ornithological community is to
>calculate time spent filling a data request and multiply that by the hourly
>wage of the person or people involved, then send that information to the
>recipient in the form of a bill whose fee has been waived.  The idea was that
>this would begin to generate the information necessary for the host institution
>to begin to consider fees ("What does it cost us per quarter to process
>data requests?") and to inform the recipients just what it is they are asking
>of us (most requests are quite reasonable, but others are truly off-the-wall).
>This would also begin to educate users of museum data (particularly users that
>charge for their expertise based on others' data) and administrators that we,
>the museum community, have something of value.
>I have not heard of any ornithology department that has done this, nor have I
>heard of one charging--yet.  I suspect it is coming, and soon.
>Robin Panza
>Section of Birds
>Carnegie Museum of Natural History

     To complicate matters, one must point out that if you begin to charge,
then you convert all the grantors and donators who paid for this collection
and its development over the past decades into venture capital investors
and stockholders, albeit not necessarily with that in mind.  Your fee
schedules then had perhaps to plan on returning some appropriate portion of
your income to them as a return on their investment (and some portion to
the IRS as well)?

    Dan Janzen

IN COSTA RICA (3 Jan- 31 Aug 1995):
c/o Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad (INBio)  FAX 506-236-2816
Apdo. 22-3100 Santo Domingo de Heredia           tel 506-236-7690
Heredia, Costa Rica                              djanzen at sas.upenn.edu

IN PHILADELPHIA (Sept-Dec 1995):
Department of Biology                           FAX 215-898-8780
University of Pennsylvania                      tel 215-898-5636
Philadelphia, PA 19104                          djanzen at sas.upenn.edu

We can be also reached at the Guanacaste Conservation Area, where we live
in northwestern Costa Rica - tel and FAX 506-695-5598.  However, many
people use that phone and it is best to call at night or on weekends.

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