Archive for the 'Open Access' Category

OCLC Outlines Its Future OAIster Strategy

Posted in OCLC, Open Access on September 20th, 2009

OCLC has outlined its future OAIster strategy in an e-mail message to OAIster database contributors.

Here's an excerpt from the "Next Steps" part of the document:

OAIster users will have two ways to access the records you contribute to OAIster.

  • search results will include OAIster records. is a publicly available Web site searchable at no charge. When users search, OAIster records will be included in search results. Each search will retrieve results from the WorldCat database along with OAIster and article-level content from sources that now include GPO Monthly Catalog, ArticleFirst, MEDLINE, ERIC, the British Library and Elsevier. Records from all sources are presented to users in integrated search results.
  • Authenticated users of libraries that subscribe to the FirstSearch Base Package may search OAIster as a separate database through, WorldCat Local and WorldCat Local "quick start." These users will be able to select OAIster for searching from the Advanced search screen.

At the University of Michigan OAIster site, there is an announcement that reads; "OCLC will be taking over operations of OAIster in October, loading August data into and making harvesting fully operational at OCLC by January 2010."

What appears to be lost in this strategy is free access to OAIster as a separate database after OCLC assumes full control of OAIster in 2010.

"The York Digital Journals Project: Strategies for Institutional Open Journal Systems Implementations"

Posted in E-Journal Management and Publishing Systems, E-Journals, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals on September 17th, 2009

College & Research Libraries has released a preprint of "The York Digital Journals Project: Strategies for Institutional Open Journal Systems Implementations" by Andrea Kosavic.

Here's an excerpt:

Embarking on a university-wide journal hosting initiative can be a resource-intensive undertaking. Providing such a service, however, can be equally rewarding as it positions the library as both partner and colleague in the publishing process. This paper discusses ideas and strategies for institutional journal hosting gleaned over two years by the York Digital Journals Project. Suggestions for startup including policy considerations and service models are discussed. Ideas for advertising and networking are explored as well as the question of project sustainability.

Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, MIT, and UC Berkeley Commit to Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity

Posted in ARL Libraries, Open Access, Publishing on September 14th, 2009

Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Berkeley have committed to a Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

Open-access scholarly journals have arisen as an alternative to traditional publications that are founded on subscription and/or licensing fees. Open-access journals make their articles available freely to anyone, while providing the same services common to all scholarly journals, such as management of the peer-review process, filtering, production, and distribution.

According to Thomas C. Leonard, university librarian at UC Berkeley, "Publishers and researchers know that it has never been easier to share the best work they produce with the world. But they also know that their traditional business model is creating new walls around discoveries. Universities can really help take down these walls and the open-access compact is a highly significant tool for the job."

The economic downturn underscores the significance of open-access publications. With library resources strained by budget cuts, subscription and licensing fees for journals have come under increasing scrutiny, and alternative means for providing access to vital intellectual content are identified. Open-access journals provide a natural alternative.

As Dartmouth Provost Barry P. Scherr sees it, "Supporting open-access publishing is an important step in increasing readership of Dartmouth research and, ultimately, the impact of our research on the world."

Since open-access journals do not charge subscription or other access fees, they must cover their operating expenses through other sources, including subventions, in-kind support, or, in a sizable minority of cases, processing fees paid by or on behalf of authors for submission to or publication in the journal. While academic research institutions support traditional journals by paying their subscription fees, no analogous means of support has existed to underwrite the growing roster of fee-based open-access journals.

Stuart Shieber, Harvard's James O. Welch, Jr. and Virginia B. Welch Professor of Computer Science and Director of the University's Office for Scholarly Communication, is the author of the five-member compact. According to Shieber, "Universities and funding agencies ought to provide equitable support for open-access publishing by subsidizing the processing fees that faculty incur when contributing to open-access publications. Right now, these fees are relatively rare. But if the research community supports open-access publishing and it gains in importance as we believe that it will, those fees could aggregate substantially over time. The compact ensures that support is available to eliminate these processing fees as a disincentive to open-access publishing."

The compact supports equity of the business models by committing each university to the timely establishment of durable mechanisms for underwriting reasonable publication fees for open-access journal articles written by its faculty for which other institutions would not be expected to provide funds.

Additional universities are encouraged to visit the compact web site and sign on.

Cornell Provost Kent Fuchs offers his perspective on participating in the compact. "As part of its social commitment as a research university," Fuchs says, "Cornell strives to ensure that scholarly research results are as widely available as possible. The Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity could increase access to scholarly literature while at the same time ensuring that the valuable services that publishers provide are supported."

A full account of the motivation for the compact can be found in the article "Equity for Open-Access Journal Publishing," published in the open-access journal Public Library of Science Biology.

"Supporting OA journals is an investment in a superior system of scholarly communication," states Peter Suber of the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) in Washington, DC, and a fellow of Harvard Law School's Berkman Center and Harvard University's Office for Scholarly Communication. "Before this compact, a number of funding agencies and universities were willing to pay OA journal processing fees on behalf of their grantees and faculty. It's significant that five major universities recognize the need to join the effort, extend fee subsidies to a wider range of publishing scholars, enlist other institutions, and start to catch up with their long practice of supporting traditional—or non-OA—journals."

Summing up the compact, MIT Provost L. Rafael Reif observes, "The dissemination of research findings to the public is not merely the right of research universities: it is their obligation. Open-access publishing promises to put more research in more hands and in more places around the world. This is a good enough reason for universities to embrace the guiding principles of this compact."

Read more about it at "Interview: Stuart Shieber."

Version 76, Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography

Posted in Bibliographies, Digital Scholarship Publications, Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Communication on September 7th, 2009

Version 76 of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography is now available from Digital Scholarship. This selective bibliography presents over 3,480 articles, books, and other digital and printed sources that are useful in understanding scholarly electronic publishing efforts on the Internet. Where possible, links are provided to works that are freely available on the Internet, including e-prints in disciplinary archives and institutional repositories.

The Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography: 2008 Annual Edition is available as a paperback book.

The bibliography has the following sections (revised sections are in italics):

1 Economic Issues
2 Electronic Books and Texts
2.1 Case Studies and History
2.2 General Works
2.3 Library Issues
3 Electronic Serials
3.1 Case Studies and History
3.2 Critiques
3.3 Electronic Distribution of Printed Journals
3.4 General Works
3.5 Library Issues
3.6 Research
4 General Works
5 Legal Issues
5.1 Intellectual Property Rights
5.2 License Agreements
6 Library Issues
6.1 Cataloging, Identifiers, Linking, and Metadata
6.2 Digital Libraries
6.3 General Works
6.4 Information Integrity and Preservation
7 New Publishing Models
8 Publisher Issues
8.1 Digital Rights Management
9 Repositories, E-Prints, and OAI
Appendix A. Related Bibliographies
Appendix B. About the Author
Appendix C. SEPB Use Statistics

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Resources includes the following sections:

Cataloging, Identifiers, Linking, and Metadata
Digital Libraries
Electronic Books and Texts
Electronic Serials
General Electronic Publishing
Repositories, E-Prints, and OAI
SGML and Related Standards

An article about the bibliography ("Evolution of an Electronic Book: The Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography") has been published in The Journal of Electronic Publishing.

"Abridgment as Added Value"

Posted in Open Access, Publishing, Scholarly Journals on September 3rd, 2009

Peter Suber has published "Abridgment as Added Value" in the latest SPARC Open Access Newsletter.

Here's an excerpt:

Imagine that an open access (OA) journal could generate revenue by selling abridgments of its full-text OA articles. Imagine that the revenue even made it unnecessary to charge author-side publication fees. That would be a supremely elegant business model, if only it could be made to work.

BMJ has made it work for more than 10 years, and next year will take the idea even further.

All BMJ research articles are full-text OA in the digital edition of the journal. The print edition, which is toll access (TA), contains 3-5 page abridgments of each research article. BMJ calls this system ELPS (for "electronic long, paper short"). The OA edition of the journal charges no publication fees, and the full-text research articles have no word limit.

Nine months ago, BMJ introduced even shorter, one-page abridgments called picos, and published selected articles in the pico format rather than the longer 3-5 page format. The experiment has been so successful that BMJ announced last month that it will phase out ELPS and go all-pico. Starting in January 2010, all BMJ research articles will have pico abridgments in the TA print edition, and the full texts will still be no-fee OA in the digital edition.

"Open Access Advocacy: A Checklist for Research Libraries"

Posted in Libraries, Open Access on September 3rd, 2009

Tilburg University has released Alma Swan's "Open Access Advocacy: A Checklist for Research Libraries."

Harvard Launches DASH (Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard) Repository

Posted in Digital Repositories, Institutional Repositories, Open Access on September 3rd, 2009

Harvard has launched its DASH (Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard) repository. (Thanks to Open Access News.)

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

Harvard's leadership in open access to scholarship took a significant step forward this week with the public launch of DASH—or Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard—a University-wide, open-access repository. More than 350 members of the Harvard research community, including over a third of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, have jointly deposited hundreds of scholarly works in DASH.

"DASH is meant to promote openness in general," stated Robert Darnton, Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and Director of the University Library. "It will make the current scholarship of Harvard's faculty freely available everywhere in the world, just as the digitization of the books in Harvard's library will make learning accumulated since 1638 accessible worldwide. Taken together, these and other projects represent a commitment by Harvard to share its intellectual wealth." . . .

DASH has its roots in the February 2008 open-access vote in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. In a unanimous decision, FAS adopted a policy stating that

Each Faculty member grants to the President and Fellows of Harvard College permission to make available his or her scholarly articles and to exercise the copyright in those articles. In legal terms, the permission granted by each Faculty member is a nonexclusive, irrevocable, paid-up, worldwide license to exercise any and all rights under copyright relating to each of his or her scholarly articles, in any medium, and to authorize others to do the same, provided that the articles are not sold for a profit.

In addition, faculty members committed to providing copies of their manuscripts for distribution, which the DASH repository now enables. Authored by Stuart M. Shieber, James O. Welch, Jr. and Virginia B. Welch Professor of Computer Science and director of the Office for Scholarly Communication, the policy marked a groundbreaking shift from simply encouraging scholars to consider open access to creating a pro-open-access policy with an "opt out" clause.

"It's the best university policy anywhere," said Peter Suber of the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition in Washington, DC, and a fellow of Harvard Law School's Berkman Center and the University's Office for Scholarly Communication (OSC). "It shifts the default so Harvard faculty must make their work openly available unless they opt out. The default at most universities is the other way around: you have to choose open access and arrange for all the provisions."

To date, Harvard Law School, the John F. Kennedy School of Government, and the Harvard Graduate School of Education have joined FAS in supporting a comprehensive policy of open access. DASH fulfills the promise made in these four open-access votes.

Still a beta, DASH is a joint project of the OSC and the Office for Information Systems (OIS), both of which are strategic programs of the Harvard University Library. DASH is based on the open-source DSpace repository platform. Software customizations will continue throughout the coming academic year.

DASH is also intended to serve as a local digital home for a wide and growing array of other scholarly content produced at the University. Non-faculty researchers and students are already afforded deposit privileges, and DASH will eventually have collection spaces for each of the 10 schools at Harvard.

Among the many features the DASH development team has added to its DSpace implementation is the ability to link directly from a faculty author's name in DASH search results to his or her entry in Profiles, a research social networking site developed by Harvard Catalyst. Profiles, which provides a comprehensive view of a researcher's publications and connections within the University research community, currently indexes faculty from the medical and public health schools; its developers hope to expand it to include the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and School of Engineering and Applied Sciences in the near future. . . .

DASH currently supports automated embargo lift dates, so that a work can be deposited "dark" and then automatically switch to open access once a publisher's self-archiving embargo has expired. Another noteworthy feature is DASH's PDF header page: when a user downloads a full-text item, DASH generates a header page for the document, giving its provenance and relevant terms of use.

"The terms of use were drafted after a series of conversations with publishers about Harvard's open-access initiatives," said Shieber. "We wanted to give publishers the opportunity to articulate their concerns about Harvard's intended use of content in the repository, and we designed our repository and our practices as responsively as possible. We continue to welcome publisher input and engagement along these lines.

"Our long-term growth strategy for DASH is to integrate it so fully into other faculty tools that self-archiving just becomes second nature. When a Harvard author is updating their profile or the CV on their personal web site, upload-to-DASH will be there, and vice versa. All these loci for sharing information about publications will eventually synchronize with one another. This includes tools that store bibliographic information only, as well as those that provide open access to full text, such as the established subject repositories already used by many of our faculty to disseminate their work. Ultimately, DASH aims to provide as comprehensive and open a view of Harvard research as possible."

"The Humanities and the NEH"

Posted in Digital Humanities, Open Access on September 2nd, 2009

In "The Humanities and the NEH," Scott Jaschik summarizes a podcast interview with James A. Leach, the National Endowment for the Humanities chairman.

Here's an excerpt:

Among other topics he discussed: . . . .

  • In discussions of digitization of scholarship and the push to require free online access to such work that receives federal support, Leach said he understands the importance of copyright, but that he leans "toward open access" and wants "maximum availability" of scholarship.

Stuart Shieber on Subsidized Open Access Fees and Academic Freedom

Posted in Open Access on September 1st, 2009

In "More on Academic Freedom and OA Funds," Stuart Shieber discusses whether subsidizing open access fees conflicts with academic freedom.

Here's an excerpt:

Kent says "libraries can't control the disbursement of open access fees precisely because of academic freedom." The premise here is that any method an OA fund uses to control disbursement must if effective necessarily cause a change in behavior of authors, for instance encouraging them to publish in less expensive journals over more expensive ones ceteris paribus. This much is true. Furthermore, there is an implicit assumption that any such policy that causes behavioral changes in where authors publish is coercive and a violation of academic freedom. They are not "free" to publish in any location because some are financially more attractive to them than others.

But no. Academic freedom means that faculty can study what they want, and publish the results where they want. It doesn't mean that the university must cover all costs for doing so, nor does it mean the university cannot cover some costs and not others in ways that redound to what the university sees as the benefit of its constituencies.

"The Open Access Availability of Library and Information Science Literature"

Posted in Libraries, Open Access, Self-Archiving on September 1st, 2009

College & Research Libraries has released a preprint of "The Open Access Availability of Library and Information Science Literature" by Doug Way.

Here's an excerpt:

To examine the open access availability of Library and Information Science (LIS) research, a study was conducted using Google Scholar to search for articles from 20 top LIS journals. The study examined whether Google Scholar was able to find any links to full text, if open access versions of the articles were available and where these articles were being hosted. The results showed the archiving of articles is not a regular practice in the field, articles are not being deposited in institutional or subject repositories at a high rate and the overall the percentage of available open access articles in LIS was similar to the findings in previous studies. In addition, the study found that Google Scholar is an effective tool for finding known LIS articles.

University of Tampere Adopts Open Access Policy

Posted in Open Access, Self-Archiving on August 27th, 2009

The University of Tampere has adopted an open access policy.

Here's an excerpt:

According to the proposal of the work group the Rector would

  • request researchers working at the University as of 1 January 2011 to deposit copies of their research articles accepted for publication in scientific journals in the institutional repository provided by the University of Tampere and
  • encourage researchers to deposit copies of their publications in the University's repository before the decision comes into force.

Research articles refers in this Decision to single articles to be published in scientific refereed journals, in the University's own publication series, in conference publications or other compilations. The final publisher's version of the article should be deposited in the repository or then the author's last version of the article revised in response to referees' comments (according to the publisher's policy).

The University of Tampere hereby undertakes to provide researchers with the support services required for parallel depositing. The University of Tampere will endeavour to improve publication information systems and to design the process of depositing in a researcher-centred manner.

In addition to the research articles referred to in the Decision, other kinds of publications which may be stored in the open depository provided by the University of Tampere include popular articles, other published written texts, serial publications of University departments, teaching material and, if the publication agreements allow, also monographs.

Ph.D Dissertation: "Scholarly Communication Changing: The Implications of Open Access"

Posted in Open Access on August 26th, 2009

Tove Faber Frandsen's Ph.D dissertation, "Scholarly CommunicationCchanging: The Implications of Open Access," is now available.

Here's an excerpt:

The dissertation aims at investigating the changing scholarly communication in general and more specifically the implications of open access on scholarly communication. The overall research question is: What are the effects of open access on scholarly communication? The dissertation consists of five empirical studies of various aspects of the implications of open access on scholarly communication.

The five studies, published as journal articles, are bibliometric studies conducted on three different levels. The first level consists of two studies of a general, more explorative character. The first general study analyses the coverage of open access base resources and the second the use of open access journals in the sciences. The next level of analysis consists of two specific studies that look into two widespread assumptions of the implications of open access. The first is the assumption that the developing countries are great beneficiaries of open access and the second is the belief that open access causes more citations. The third level consists of a concluding, perspectival study. The levels in the thesis to some extent also follow the chronological order of the studies.

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