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Lean Library

SAGE acquired Lean Library and its associated products in 2019 to promote the value of the academic library to patrons and bring library services directly into the patron’s workflow via their web browser. With academic library experience at its roots, Lean Library continues to work closely with the community to deliver a new class of library services that respond to changing learning and research needs in the digital age.

What are Lean Library's services?

Access. Assist. Alternatives.

Lean Library provides a browser plugin for users of an academic or research library which makes library services available seamlessly in the user's workflow – where and when they are needed.

  • Access simplifies access to subscribed e-resources, including a one-click solution for off-campus users
  • Assist promotes the library’s brand and enables the library to send tailored messages to users, in context, on the platform
  • Alternatives presents the reader with alternative routes to full text, should an article not be accessible at the website the user currently is visiting

Why subscribe to Lean Library’s products?

  • They allow faculty and students to focus on their research rather than spending time searching for resources
  • They enable libraries to promote their services wherever their patrons are
  • Discover the Lean Library difference

What are librarians saying about Lean Library?

Check out these case studies from some of our current subscribers and see how Lean Library has impacted their libraries. 

Listen to our podcast with The Authority File, a CHOICE podcast

In this four part series, Karen Phillips of SAGE Publishing, Johan Tilstra of Lean Library, and Richard Griscom of the University of Pennsylvania libraries talk through content delivery, library technology, and the skillsets librarians need to deliver.

Listen to the Podcast

Visit to see how these resources may benefit your library.


Frequently asked questions 

Why is SAGE making this acquisition?

In this burgeoning digital age, the way in which researchers and students access and use content has and continues to change. Librarians are increasingly faced with the challenges of supporting researcher's discoverability worldwide.

The Lean Library acquisition further expands SAGE’s Technologies for Learning and Research by offering a new class of library services that responds to the evolving needs of the academic librarian.

Supporting a seamless discoverability experience both on and off campus and placing the library firmly in the workflow of the student, Lean Library is able to intuitively support both access to research as well as promoting the library brand and thus supporting its integral role within the institution.

SAGE has decades of experience with the discovery challenges facing researchers through our own digital publishing, and since our founding has had a commitment to supporting researchers, students, librarians and the wider scholarly market through the changes in our landscape. Adding Lean Library to SAGE's portfolio of Technologies for Learning and Research enables us to better support the evolving student, researcher and librarian needs through an expanded and full suite of technology solutions.

How will subscriptions be handled? Who will deal with customer service questions?

A number of operational functions will transition to SAGE. This will take place over the 12 months following the acquisition.

For all new customer service queries, free trials and new orders please contact