Alliance for Taxpayer Access Call to Action about White House Open Access RFI

The Alliance for Taxpayer Access has issued a call to action about the OSTP open access RFI.

Here's the press release:

CALL TO ACTION: Let the White House know you support public access to public funded research

Last week, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) issued a Request for Information (RFI) inviting input on "enhancing public access to archived publications resulting from research funded by federal science and technology agencies." SPARC is pleased that the Administration, as part of its Transparency and Open Government initiative, is looking at public access as an opportunity to stimulate scientific and technological innovation and competitiveness.

All are urged to respond to this pivotal opportunity, as individuals and on behalf of institutions and organizations, NO LATER than January 7, 2010. Your input will be critical in helping the administration to form a deep and balanced view of stakeholders’ interest in ensuring public access to publicly funded research.

This RFI will be active for only 30 days, from December 10, 2009 to January 7, 2010. Respondents are invited to comment online through the Public Access Policy blog at, where the discussion will center on a single theme for each of three ten-day periods.

December 10 – 20: Implementation

December 21 – 31: Features and technology

January 1 – 7: Management

Email comments will also be accepted, but will still be posted to the blog by the moderator. General comments may also be submitted. See the full Federal Register notice at for details.

If you have any questions or would like to discuss, please contact SPARC, representing the Alliance for Taxpayer Access.

Heather Joseph, Executive Director
heather [at] arl [dot] org

Jennifer McLennan, Director of Communications
jennifer [at] arl [dot] org

We'll look forward to talking with you, and to working with you on this tremendous opportunity for higher education and American public.

Note: To post comments on the OSTP blog, you must register and login. There are also registration and login links on the sidebar of the Archive for the Public Access Policy OSTP blog category at the bottom right and on the OSTP blog home page in the same location. The current discussion post is "Policy Forum on Public Access to Federally Funded Research: Implementation." As noted in the Federal Register announcement, comments can also be e-mailed to

Read more about the OSTP RFI at "Obama Administration Potentially a Strong Voice in Open Access Debate" and "Obama's Open Government Plan Includes Open Access for Research Publications."

12/22/09 Update: The current discussion post is "Policy Forum on Public Access to Federally Funded Research: Features and Technology." Comments are entered at this post.

Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog Update (12/16/09)

The latest update of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Weblog (SEPW) is now available. It provides information about new works related to scholarly electronic publishing, such as books, e-prints, journal articles, magazine articles, technical reports, and white papers.

Especially interesting are: "Dublin Core Metadata Semantics: An Analysis of the Perspectives of Information Professionals," "Enhancing Scientific Communication through Aggregated Publications Environments," "How to Publish Data Using Overlay Journals: The OJIMS Project," "Increasing the Productivity of Interactions between Subject and Institutional Repositories," "Open Access and the Google Book Settlement" and "SCOAP3 and Open Access."

JISC Repositories and Preservation Programme: Final Evaluation Report

JISC has released JISC Repositories and Preservation Programme: Final Evaluation Report.

Here's an excerpt:

This report provides an evaluation of the JISC Repositories and Preservation Programme (RPP) as it reached its conclusion. The Repositories and Preservation Programme was a £14m investment in Higher Education repository and digital content infrastructure running between April 2006 and March 2009. The programme funded a wide range of initiatives to support the development of digital repositories and related activities. The programme was established in order to achieve a number of benefits for the JISC community and related stakeholders.

The aim of this report is to draw together various data sources and provide a high level evaluation of the JISC Repositories and Preservation Programme. The Repositories and Preservation Programme team has taken a benefit led approach to the evaluation of the programme based around the Managing Successful Programmes (MSP) methodology. Twenty one benefits were identified and developed to reflect what the programme sought to achieve. The purpose of the final evaluation was to ascertain whether the benefits had been achieved or are likely to be achieved due to the work of the programme. Data for the evaluation was drawn from a variety of sources.

Insight into Digital Preservation of Research Output in Europe

PARSE.Insight (INSIGHT into issues of Permanent Access to the Records of Science in Europe) has released Insight into Digital Preservation of Research Output in Europe.

Here's an excerpt:

This report . . . describes the results of the surveys conducted by PARSE.Insight to gain insight into research in Europe. Major surveys were held within three stake-holder domains: research, publishing and data management. In total, almost 2,000 people responded; they provided us with interesting insights in the current state of affairs in digital preservation of digital research data (including publications), the outlook of data preservation, data sharing, roles & responsibilities of stakeholders in research and funding of research.

Cornell Gives about 80,000 Digitized Public Domain Books to Internet Archive

The Cornell University Library has given about 80,000 digitized public domain books to the Internet Archive.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

In an effort to make its materials globally accessible, Cornell University Library is sharing tens of thousands of digitized books with the Internet Archive.

"We have been carefully preserving and storing materials for years, and now we're diversifying the channels for them to be studied and used," said Oya Reiger, associate university librarian for information technologies. "We have the ability to take books to the places where readers are."

The new collaboration repurposes nearly 80,000 books that the Library has already digitized in-house or through its partnership with Microsoft and Kirtas Technologies. All the books are in the public domain, printed before 1923 mainly in the United States. They cover a host of subject areas, including American history, English literature, astronomy, food and wine, general engineering, the history of science, home economics, hospitality and travel, labor relations, Native American materials, ornithology, veterinary medicine and women's studies. . . .

"Expanding access to knowledge is one of the Library's core principles, and we are excited to participate in the open-access vision of the Internet Archive," said Anne R. Kenney, Carl A. Kroch University Librarian.

The collaboration with Internet Archive is another step in Cornell University Library's cutting-edge participation in mass digitization initiatives. Earlier this year, the Library announced an expanded print-on-demand partnership with that allows readers to pay for reprinting of books on an individual basis.

"The Internet Archive is proud to process and host the books from Cornell — these collections are priceless," said Brewster Kahle, founder and digital librarian of the Internet Archive. "We are happy that Microsoft put no restrictions on the scanned public domain books and Cornell is encouraging maximum readership and research use."

Performing a simple search for one of Cornell University Library's digitized books now brings up both a copy on Amazon and a free online copy on the Internet Archive.

Version 77, Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography

Version 77 of the Scholarly Electronic Publishing Bibliography is now available from Digital Scholarship. This selective bibliography presents over 3,620 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 and as a Kindle e-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 and User Authentication
9 Repositories, E-Prints, and OAI
Appendix A. Related Bibliographies
Appendix B. About the Author
Appendix C. SEPB Use Statistics

Head of Library Systems at Florida State University

The Florida State University Library is recruiting a Head of Library Systems.

Here's an excerpt from the ad:

Responsible for the maintenance and development of information technology in the University Libraries including over 20 servers and over 600 networked staff and public workstations and associated equipment across three facilities. The position heads the unit supporting the local and remote library information technology services provided to a large public research university and reports to the Associate Director for Technology.

Columbia University Joins Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity

Columbia University Libraries/Information Services have joined the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

Columbia University has joined several leading institutions of higher learning in a commitment to a Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity. Other signatories to the compact are Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California at Berkeley.

The compact commits signatories to the timely establishment of mechanisms for underwriting reasonable publication fees for open access journal articles authored by researchers without alternative funding. The effort around the compact arose as a result of discussions within the university community about providing sustainable, efficient, and effective business models for journal publishing. "The growth of this new strategy for support for high quality scholarly communication in the expanding number of open access journals requires our participation and support," said Jim Neal, Columbia's Vice President for Information Services and University Librarian.

In today's scholarly publishing environment, financial strain is motivating libraries to seek means other than traditional subscription journals for providing access to intellectual content. OA journals offer such an alternative, while providing the same services common to scholarly journals such as management of the peer-review process, filtering, production, and distribution.

Following from the compact commitment, Columbia University Libraries/Information Services is establishing a fund to help support Columbia faculty, staff, and students who wish to publish in OA journals. The Libraries are currently formulating policy and eligibility requirements for the fund, which will be administered by the Scholarly Communication Program, based at the Center for Digital Research and Scholarship (CDRS). CDRS currently offers free and for-cost publishing services for Columbia-based scholarly journals, and specializes in support for open access publications.

Springer Science+Business Media Sold to EQT and GIC

Springer Science+Business Media has been sold to EQT and GIC.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The Board of Directors of Springer Science+Business Media (Springer Group), composed of Springer executives and representatives of Cinven and Candover, have agreed to accept an offer from and have signed a sales agreement with a partnership of EQT, a private equity investor based in Sweden, and GIC, a Singapore-based co-investor, for all shares of the Springer Group. The Springer Group is the world’s second largest scientific, technical and medical (STM) publisher and a leader in the digitalization of scientific information.

Furthermore, EQT and GIC have agreed to inject new equity into the Springer Group, to strengthen its balance sheet and decrease the overall cost of funding. A refinancing agreement with a syndicate of banks will give the Springer Group medium-term stability by removing imminent potential refinancing issues.

The acquisition is subject to examination and approval by European, US and national competition authorities. This process is expected to be finished by mid to late January or early February 2010.

Derk Haank, Springer’s CEO, said, “The Springer Executive Management Team has had constructive and collegial discussions with EQT. I am confident that this marks the beginning of a new exciting and successful chapter for us and for our new partners at EQT and GIC. The sale will allow us to move our ambitious and ongoing 'e' strategy forward, and to invest more heavily for our stakeholder’s benefit – this is the best solution for the company, our employees and shareholders.”

Read more about it at "Springer Group, Second-Leading STM Publisher, Sold by/to Private Equity Firms" and "Springer Publishing Group Sold for €100m ."

Helen Shenton Named Deputy Director of the Harvard University Library

Helen Shenton, Head of Collection Care for the British Library, has been named Deputy Director of the Harvard University Library.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

In 2002, she became the first overall head of collection care for the British Library (BL), where her purview encompasses conservation, preservation, training and research, collection storage, and security for 150 million items, ranging from the Magna Carta to 300 terabytes of digital material. She co-founded the BL's first comprehensive digital preservation team, and she led an innovative collection-management strategic "strand" known as the "Life Cycle" program.

With eleven years of experience on the BL's senior leadership team, Shenton is steeped in collection management, information technology, human resources, and new building projects. She masterminded the BL's new world-class Centre for Conservation and is heavily involved with the BL’s new high-density, low-oxygen robotic depository 190 miles from London, into which a half-mile of stock is currently being transferred per day.

Shenton studied English Literature at University College London and trained at the London College of Printing and with the arts and crafts book conservator Roger Powell. She joined the British Library in 1998 after 14 years in the conservation department of the Victoria and Albert Museum, where she was responsible for the textiles, paper, paintings, photography, and book disciplines.

She also honed her management skills at the Harvard Business School's Executive Strategy Program this summer.

"I do not underestimate the enormity of the challenges ahead," she says, "but I am very excited at the prospect of joining Harvard University Library at such a key moment to help make the library and information provision even better for students and faculty now and in the future."

Shenton will arrive at Harvard early in 2010.

OSTP Policy Forum on Public Access to Federally Funded Research

Diane DiEuliis, Assistant Director, Life Sciences, Office of Science and Technology Policy, and Robynn Sturm, U.S. Assistant Deputy Chief Technology Officer, Office of Science and Technology Policy, have posted "Policy Forum on Public Access to Federally Funded Research: Implementation" on the OSTP Blog.

Note: To post comments on the OSTP Blog, you must register and login. There are registration and login links on the sidebar of the blog home page at the bottom right (these links are not on individual blog postings).

Here's an excerpt from the post:

Yesterday we announced the launch of the Public Access Forum, sponsored by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Beginning with today's post, we look forward to a productive online discussion.

One of our nation's most important assets is the trove of data produced by federally funded scientists and published in scholarly journals. The question that this Forum will address is: To what extent and under what circumstances should such research articles—funded by taxpayers but with value added by scholarly publishers—be made freely available on the Internet?

The Forum is set to run through Jan. 7, 2010, during which time we will focus sequentially on three broad themes (you can access the full schedule here). In the first phase of this forum (Dec. 10th-20th) we want to focus on the topic of Implementation. Among the questions we'd like to have you, the public and various stakeholders, consider are:

  • Who should enact public access policies? Many agencies fund research the results of which ultimately appear in scholarly journals. The National Institutes of Health requires that research funded by its grants be made available to the public online at no charge within 12 months after publication. Which other Federal agencies may be good candidates to adopt public access policies? Are there objective reasons why some should promulgate public access policies and others not? What criteria are appropriate to consider when an agency weighs the potential costs (including administrative and management burdens) and benefits of increased public access?
  • How should a public access policy be designed?
  1. Timing. At what point in time should peer-reviewed papers be made public via a public access policy relative to the date a publisher releases the final version? Are there empirical data to support an optimal length of time? Different fields of science advance at different rates—a factor that can influence the short- and long-term value of new findings to scientists, publishers and others. Should the delay period be the same or vary across disciplines? If it should vary, what should be the minimum or maximum length of time between publication and public release for various disciplines? Should the delay period be the same or vary for levels of access (e.g. final peer reviewed manuscript or final published article, access under fair use versus alternative license)?
  2. Version. What version of the paper should be made public under a public access policy (e.g., the author's peer-reviewed manuscript or the final published version)? What are the relative advantages and disadvantages of different versions of a scientific paper?
  3. Mandatory v. Voluntary. The NIH mandatory policy was enacted after a voluntary policy at the agency failed to generate high levels of participation. Are there other approaches to increasing participation that would have advantages over mandatory participation?
  4. Other. What other structural characteristics of a public access policy ought to be taken into account to best accommodate the needs and interests of authors, primary and secondary publishers, libraries, universities, the federal government, users of scientific literature and the public?

We invite your comments and in particular encourage you to be specific in your thoughts and proposals, providing empirical data and specific supporting examples whenever possible so this discussion can generate maximum practical value. You may want to start by reading a more complete description of this issue as it appeared in the Federal Register.

How Much Information? 2009 Report on American Consumers

The Global Information Industry Center at UCSD has released How Much Information? 2009 Report on American Consumers.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

In 2008, Americans consumed information for about 1.3 trillion hours, an average of almost 12 hours per day. Consumption totaled 3.6 zettabytes and 10,845 trillion words, corresponding to 100,500 words and 34 gigabytes for an average person on an average day. A zettabyte is 10 to the 21st power bytes, a million million gigabytes. These estimates are from an analysis of more than 20 different sources of information, from very old (newspapers and books) to very new (portable computer games, satellite radio, and Internet video). Information at work is not included. . . .

Hours of information consumption grew at 2.6 percent per year from 1980 to 2008, due to a combination of population growth and increasing hours per capita, from 7.4 to 11.8. More surprising is that information consumption in bytes increased at only 5.4 percent per year. Yet the capacity to process data has been driven by Moore's Law, rising at least 30 percent per year. One reason for the slow growth in bytes is that color TV changed little over that period. High-definition TV is increasing the number of bytes in TV programs, but slowly.

The traditional media of radio and TV still dominate our consumption per day, with a total of 60 percent of the hours. In total, more than three-quarters of U.S. households' information time is spent with non-computer sources.

Despite this, computers have had major effects on some aspects of information consumption. In the past, information consumption was overwhelmingly passive, with telephone being the only interactive medium. Thanks to computers, a full third of words and more than half of bytes are now received interactively. Reading, which was in decline due to the growth of television, tripled from 1980 to 2008, because it is the overwhelmingly preferred way to receive words on the Internet.

Repository Librarian at UNC-CH

The University of North Carolina Libraries are recruiting a Repository Librarian.

Here's an excerpt from the ad:

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is seeking a motivated, self-starter with excellent task management and communication skills to serve as Repository Librarian for the Carolina Digital Repository (CDR), the University's institutional and digital preservation repository. The CDR manages and ensures continuing access to digital content of enduring value produced or maintained at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It is a University-wide service in support of persistent access to Carolina's digital scholarship and heritage. The CDR provides a set of services to help Carolina community members manage and secure their digital content, and make this content discoverable online to designated communities, as well as the mechanisms for digital content to be collected, organized, stored, searched, linked, read, distributed, indexed, and preserved.

Reporting to the Head of the Library Systems Office, the Repository Librarian will be responsible for supporting UNC faculty, students, and staff with information, training, and assistance in depositing digital materials into the CDR, and for working with the CDR Steering Committee and with policy, programming, and other staff to define and implement repository policies, workflows, and capabilities. The Repository Librarian will have lead responsibility for ensuring that CDR programs align with the needs of the UNC community and that UNC faculty, students, and staff are aware of and know how to utilize CDR services.

Business Systems Analyst 3 at Yale's Office of Digital Assets and Infrastructure

Here's an excerpt from the ad (STARS Requisition no. 8666BR):

Yale’s Office of Digital Assets and Infrastructure (ODAI) is seeking a highly motivated digital information expert to pursue innovative approaches to challenging issues in the discovery of diverse digital assets, in interoperability across disparate collections, in enhancement of collaborative scholarly environments, and in development of effective digital publishing platforms.

ODAI has undertaken an initiative to jointly define and build essential research-based and domain-informed components of a coherent technical infrastructure and a comprehensive policy layer for research support. This program is strategically aligned with other digital infrastructure initiatives in ODAI including the development of digital preservation services with a secure storage environment.

The Digital Information Research Specialist will play an important role in shaping ODAI’s involvement in this development of campus-wide support for e-science, digital data curation, and cyberscholarship for all disciplines. Reporting to the ODAI Director, he or she will work closely with the ODAI Information Architect and Digital Information Strategic Analysts.

Essential Duties

  1. Work at the intersection of digital data, technology and metadata, and will be responsible for consultation, assessment and articulating requirements to facilitate all aspects of digital data curation and cross collection discovery. To be successful, communication, outreach and close collaboration will be essential in working with units across campus, including faculty, libraries, museums and galleries, information technologists, the ODAI task forces and researchers across the many disciplines engaged in digital data management.
  2. Conduct advanced research in and articulate potential implementation strategies related to scientific research trends, data documentation tools, topic modeling, schema and ontology development and standards important for data exchange, reuse and interoperability. Evaluate and apply various information technology tools for metadata manipulation and script execution.

Article-Level Repository Statistics: PIRUS 2 Project Launched

The PIRUS 2 project has been launched.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

PIRUS 2, supported by JISC, the United Kingdom Joint Information Systems Committee, is a co-operative project involving repositories and publishers, which will develop a set of standards, protocols and processes to enable publishers, repositories and other organizations to generate and share authoritative, trustworthy usage statistics for the individual articles and other items that they host.

PIRUS 2 builds on the standards already established by COUNTER and on the results of the original PIRUS (Publisher and Institutional Repository Usage Statistics) project, which demonstrated that it is technically feasible to create record and consolidate usage statistics for individual articles using data from repositories and publishers, despite the diversity of organizational and technical environments in which they operate.

Until now the most granular level at which COUNTER requires reporting of usage is at the individual journal level. A number of recent developments have, however, means that it would now be appropriate to give a higher priority to developing a COUNTER standard for the recording, reporting and consolidation of usage statistics at the individual article level.

PIRUS 2 will seek to meet the following main objectives:

  • Develop a suite of free, open source programmes to support the generation and sharing of COUNTER compliant usage data and statistics that can be extended to cover any and all individual items in institutional and subject repositories
  • Develop a prototype article level Publisher/Repository usage statistics service Define a core set of standard usage statistics reports that repositories could/should produce for internal and external consumption
  • Assess the costs for repositories and publishers of generating the required usage reports, as well as the costs of any central clearing house/houses; investigate how these costs could be allocated between stakeholders

Objections to the Google Books Settlement and Responses in the Amended Settlement: A Report

The Public-Interest Book Search Initiative at the New York Law School has released Objections to the Google Books Settlement and Responses in the Amended Settlement: A Report.

Here's an excerpt:

This report collects information about the objections raised to the original proposed settlement in the Authors Guild v. Google litigation. We identified 76 distinct issues, which we grouped into 11 categories. This report briefly summarizes each issue, provides an illustrative quotation from a filing with the court, and indicates any related changes in the amended settlement. . . .

This report is descriptive, not evaluative. Inclusion of an issue means only that at least one party made the full argument in a filing to the court. It does not represent any judgment about whether the objection accurately characterizes the settlement or the underlying facts. Nor does it represent any judgment about the legal merits of the objection. Our classification and ordering of the objections are meant as an aid to the reader, not substantive commentary. Our choice of representative quotations is not meant as an endorsement of any particular filer’s arguments. Similarly, inclusion of changes from the amended settlement does not represent a judgment about whether the changes address the relevant objection.

University of Northern Colorado Libraries Open Access Resolution

The University of Northern Colorado Libraries faculty have unanimously adopted an open access resolution.

Here's an excerpt:

We, the faculty of University Libraries of the University of Northern Colorado (UNC) resolve the following:

  1. To disseminate our scholarship as broadly as possible. We endeavor to make our scholarly work openly accessible in conformance with open access principles. Whenever possible, we make our scholarship available in digital format, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions.
  2. To deposit our scholarly work in our institutional repository, Digital UNC at the earliest possible opportunity.
  3. To seek publishers whose policies allow us to make our research freely available online. When a publisher’s policies do not allow us to make our research freely available online, we resolve to engage in good faith negotiations with the publisher to allow deposit of peer-reviewed, pre- or post-print versions of our scholarly work in Digital UNC. This resolution, however, gives us the latitude and individual discretion to publish where we deem necessary, given our career goals, intended audience, and other reasonable factors.

The resolution applies to the scholarly works authored and co-authored while faculty are employed at UNC Libraries, beginning with works published or submitted for publication after December 2, 2009. The works encompassed by this resolution include journal articles and conference proceedings. We encourage the deposit of other scholarly work, including but not limited to book chapters and conference presentations.

This open access resolution will be reviewed by faculty of the University Libraries after one year.

OSTP Requests Input Regarding Possible Open Access to Federally Funded Research Results

The Office of Science and Technology Policy is requesting input regarding enhanced access to federally funded science and technology research results, including the possibility of open access to them. Comments can be e-mailed to The deadline for comments is January 7, 2010.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

Input is welcome on any aspect of expanding public access to peer reviewed publications arising from federal research. Questions that individuals may wish to address include, but are not limited to, the following (please respond to questions individually):

  1. How do authors, primary and secondary publishers, libraries, universities, and the federal government contribute to the development and dissemination of peer reviewed papers arising from federal funds now, and how might this change under a public access policy?
  2. What characteristics of a public access policy would best accommodate the needs and interests of authors, primary and secondary publishers, libraries, universities, the federal government, users of scientific literature, and the public?
  3. Who are the users of peer-reviewed publications arising from federal research? How do they access and use these papers now, and how might they if these papers were more accessible? Would others use these papers if they were more accessible, and for what purpose?
  4. How best could federal agencies enhance public access to the peer-reviewed papers that arise from their research funds? What measures could agencies use to gauge whether there is increased return on federal investment gained by expanded access?
  5. What features does a public access policy need to have to ensure compliance?
  6. What version of the paper should be made public under a public access policy (e.g., the author's peer reviewed manuscript or the final published version)? What are the relative advantages and disadvantages to different versions of a scientific paper?
  7. At what point in time should peer-reviewed papers be made public via a public access policy relative to the date a publisher releases the final version? Are there empirical data to support an optimal length of time? Should the delay period be the same or vary for levels of access (e.g., final peer reviewed manuscript or final published article, access under fair use versus alternative license), for federal agencies and scientific disciplines?
  8. How should peer-reviewed papers arising from federal investment be made publicly available? In what format should the data be submitted in order to make it easy to search, find, and retrieve and to make it easy for others to link to it? Are there existing digital standards for archiving and interoperability to maximize public benefit? How are these anticipated to change?
  9. Access demands not only availability, but also meaningful usability. How can the federal government make its collections of peer- reviewed papers more useful to the American public? By what metrics (e.g., number of articles or visitors) should the Federal government measure success of its public access collections? What are the best examples of usability in the private sector (both domestic and international)? And, what makes them exceptional? Should those who access papers be given the opportunity to comment or provide feedback?

In "The Obama Administration Wants OA for Federally-Funded Research," Peter Suber says:

  • This is big. We already have important momentum in Congress for FRPAA. The question here is about separate action from the White House. What OA policies should President Obama direct funding agencies to adopt? This is the first major opening to supplement legislative action with executive action to advance public access to publicly-funded research. It's also the first explicit sign that President Obama supports the OA policy at the NIH and wants something similar at other federal agencies.
  • Don't forget that FRPAA has to stand in line behind healthcare reform, financial regulation, and climate change. This is the perfect time to open a new front from the executive branch. Also don't forget that the federal funding agencies belong to the executive branch and are subject to executive order.
  • Comments are due January 7. Please write one and spread the word, not necessarily in that order. As far as I can tell, comments from non-citizens addressing the nine questions are as welcome as comments from US citizens.
  • You can be sure that the publishing lobby will be writing comments. It's vital that the research community be heard as well, loud and clear.

Read more about it at "OSTP to Launch Public Forum on How Best to Make Federally Funded Research Results Available For Free."

Also, the Office Of Management and Budget has released the Open Government Directive.

Revised NSF Software Development for Cyberinfrastructure Solicitation

The NSF has issued a revised solicitation for Software Development for Cyberinfrastructure grants (NSF 10-508). It is anticipated that $15,000,000 over a three-year period will be available for 25 to 30 awards. The full proposal deadline is February 26, 2010.

Here's an excerpt:

The FY2010 SDCI solicitation supports the development, deployment, and maintenance of software in the five software focus area listed above, i.e., software for HPC systems, software for digital data management, software for networking, middleware, and cybersecurity, and specifically focuses on cross-cutting issues of CI software sustainability, manageability and power/energy efficiency in each of these software focus areas. . . .

  1. Software for Digital Data

The Data focus area addresses software that promotes acquisition, transport, discovery, access, analysis, and preservation of very large-scale digital data in support of large scale applications or data sets transitioning to use by communities other than the ones that originally gathered the data. Examples of such datasets includes climatologic, ecologic, phonologic, observation data, sensor systems, spatial visualizations, multi-dimensional datasets correlated with metadata and so forth.

Specific focus areas in Software for Digital Data for the FY2010 SDCI solicitation include:

  • Documentation/Metadata: Tools for automated/facilitated metadata creation/acquisition, including linking data and metadata to assist in curation efforts; tools to enable the creation and application of ontologies, semantic discovery, assessment, comparison, and integration of new composite ontologies.
  • Security/Protection: Tools for data authentication, tiered/layered access systems for data confidentiality/privacy protection, replication tools to ensure data protection across varied storage systems/strategies, rules-based data security management tools, and assurance tools to test for digital forgery and privacy violations.
  • Data transport/management: Tools to enable acquisition of high data rate high volume data from varied, distributed data sources (including sensors systems and instruments), while addressing stringent space and data quality constraints; tools to assist in improved low-level management of data and transport to take better advantage of limited bandwidth.
  • Data analytics and visualization: Tools that operate in (near) real-time, not traditional batch mode, on possible streaming data, in-transit data processing, data integration and fusion.  

Maria Bonn Named Associate University Librarian for Publishing at Michigan

Maria Bonn has been named Associate University Librarian for Publishing at the University of Michigan Library. Bonn is currently the Director of Michigan's Scholarly Publishing Office.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

"Scholarly publishing and libraries are both in tremendous upheaval as a result of major technological change," said Paul N. Courant, dean of libraries, who noted the new post has been created to oversee the library's growing suite of publishing and scholarly communications initiatives.

"We need leaders with the vision and insight to help us thrive in this new environment, and find new ways to support the academy's mission of communicating its discoveries and ideas," Courant said. "Maria Bonn is the right person to play this new and exciting role on behalf of Michigan and the academy more broadly."

For the last 10 years, Bonn has pioneered the production of electronic books and journals. Her role has included developing the profile of the library in scholarly communication. Under Bonn's leadership, the Scholarly Publishing Office was created.

The experimental publishing unit provides electronic publishing tools and systems for both born-digital and converted publications, publishes a reprint series of public domain works from the library's collections. The unit is also involved in several collaborative activities including the ACLS Humanities EBook project, the LLMC-Digital project, the Digital Culture Books Imprint, Open Humanities Press, and the Text Creation Partnership.

"Creating this new position signals a unique awareness on the part of the University of Michigan that the University's publishing activity can best be supported and grown in the context of the library," Bonn said.

According to Bonn, the library has already created a powerful publishing capacity by bringing together the University of Michigan Press, the Scholarly Publishing Office, Deep Blue, and the Text Creation Partnership under one umbrella.

"This alliance gives us the potential to make a significant intervention in mission-driven scholarly publishing," she said. "I look forward to building upon the existing strengths of the publishing units to create resources and services that meet the needs of the university and of the larger scholarly community."

Bonn will also serve as an advisor to the University community on issues surrounding scholarly publishing and communication policy and will support innovative projects in those areas both in and out of the library.

Bonn has a doctorate in American literature from SUNY Buffalo and a master's in information and library science from U-M. She published work on contemporary American literature, particularly the literature of arising from American involvement in Vietnam. She spent several years as an academic and instructor at universities including the Sichuan International Studies University in Chongqing, China and Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey.

After receiving her MILS in 1996, Bonn joined the U-M Library first as an interface specialist for the Digital Library Production Service, then in Digital Library Program Development, where she began the work that grew into the Scholarly Publishing Office.

UC Publishing Services Launched

The University of California Press and the California Digital Library have launched the UC Publishing Services (UCPubS).

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

UCPubS offers a suite of open access digital and print publication services to University of California centers, institutes, and departments that produce scholarly books. By coordinating the publishing efforts of UC Press, the California Digital Library's eScholarship program, and publishing partners throughout the UC system, UCPubS provides a sustainable publishing model that extends the University's capacity to disseminate its scholarship to the world.

Building on current publishing activities, UCPubS enables organizations such as the Townsend Center at UC Berkeley and the Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA to focus on scholarship rather than on distribution, sales and web platform development. "Campus partners immediately recognize the benefits of this program as it solves so many of the logistical challenges they face as small publishers," according to Laura Cerruti, Director of Digital Content Development at UC Press. These challenges include reaching a broader public by increasing print sales and gaining access to new market channels; streamlining peer review and manuscript production; reliable preservation of digital publications; and tracking usage and sales of publications. "The program seeks to enable greater visibility of UC-affiliated research while reducing duplication of effort and cost," Cerruti added.

With this shared resource model, campus publishing partners are responsible for selection of content, peer review, editing, design, and composition. eScholarship provides open-access digital publishing, peer review and manuscript management tools, and preservation. University of California Press handles printing (using print-on-demand technology), sales and distribution of print publications, and online marketing for both print and digital publications. "For the University Press and the Library, it is a mutually beneficial partnership, enabling us to amplify our capacity to serve our institution in ways that neither one of us could do as effectively alone. Combining eScholarship's open access platform with UC Press"s commercial distribution capacity brings two seemingly divergent models together as a flexible solution to monographic publishing needs at UC," says Catherine Mitchell, Director of the Publishing Group at the California Digital Library. . . .

Several partners are already using UCPubS services: The Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley; California Academic Partnership Program (CAPP); The Earl Warren Institute of Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity, UC Berkeley School of Law; The Townsend Center for the Humanities, UC Berkeley; Global, Area, and International Archive (GAIA); Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA; Regional History Project at the University Library, UC Santa Cruz; and the UCLA Graduate Student Association.