February 11, 2016

Five Institutional Strategies for Textbook Affordability | From the Bell Tower

Steven Bell

Whether you’re just getting started or want to take your program to the next level, thinking strategically about campus adoption of Open Educational Resources (OER) can make a difference.

Increasing Participation in Your Institutional Repository

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So you’ve established an institutional repository, where users can put papers, theses, and experimental data on file, making it easily accessible to the larger world. While getting an institutional repository up and running is no small feat, it’s only the first step. To make the most of this tool, you have to fill it, and that means getting ongoing participation from faculty and students.

Libraries Support Data-Sharing Across the Research Lifecycle

Will Cross with arms folded in front of a bookshelf

As more and more researchers are committed to sharing their data, libraries are seizing the opportunity to demonstrate their value across the research lifecycle and support open culture. Mandates from funding agencies have made data management and sharing a high priority for researchers; new strategies for reuse and visualization are shining a spotlight on the importance of discoverability. Libraries have an important role to play in research data management and sharing; they are taking the opportunity to remind their partners across campus that managing research data, like most efforts in scholarly communication, is a team sport.

CHORUS Inks Agreement with NSF, USGS, NIST

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CHORUS (the Clearinghouse for the Open Research of the United States) has partnered with a number of federal agencies over the past six months to help them comply with the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) directives requiring open access to federally funded research. The United States Department of Energy (DOE), the Smithsonian Institution, the National Science Foundation (NSF), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and U.S. Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have all reached agreements with CHORUS.

Harvard Launches “Free the Law” Digitization Project

Langdell Hall, Harvard Law School, Cambridge, MA
Photo credit: Daderot via Wikimedia Commons -

It took Harvard Law School (HLS) nearly 200 years, since its founding in 1817, to amass its collection of United States case law reporters—one of the world’s largest collections of legal materials. It will take the HLS Library about three years to scan and digitize that collection and, in partnership with legal technology startup Ravel Law, make it freely available to the public online. If all goes according to plan, by early to mid–2017, the “Free the Law” project will have digitized the “official print versions of all historical U.S. court decisions,” according to the HLS Library blog.

METRO Hosts Panel on Open Ed Resources

Panelists Lisa Norberg, Megan Wacha, and Steven Ovadia

As part of the ongoing celebration of International Open Access Week, Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) and the Greater New York Metropolitan Area Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL/NY) organized a panel discussion on November 2 titled “Leveraging Open Educational Resources in the Classroom and Beyond.”

FASTR Approved by Senate Committee

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On July 29 the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC) unanimously passed S. 779, the Fair Access to Science and Technology Research (FASTR) Act by voice vote. The bill, which calls for public access to taxpayer-funded research, was marked up to bring it into line with the existing White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) policy memorandum and current National institutes of Health (NIH) policy, and will now move to the full Senate for consideration.

Sharing Policy Draws Criticism; Elsevier Responds

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On April 30 the academic publishing company Elsevier announced that it would be updating its article sharing policies. In a post on its website titled Unleashing the power of academic sharing, Elsevier’s director of access and policy Alicia Wise outlined a framework of new sharing and hosting policies, which include guidelines for sharing academic articles at every stage of their existence, from preprint to post-publication, and protocol for both non-commercial—that is, repository—and commercial hosting platforms.

U. Minnesota Press, CUNY Grad Center Develop Hybrid Publishing Platform

University of Minnesota Press

The University of Minnesota Press and the GC Digital Scholarship Lab at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY) in April were awarded a $732,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to launch Manifold Scholarship, a new platform that will enable the publication of iterative, networked, electronic versions of scholarly monographs alongside the print edition of the book.

K|N’s Open Access Network: Knowledge Made Public

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The Open Access Network (OAN), a project set to establish a business model for OA in the humanities and social sciences, was the topic of a key session at “Knowledge Made Public,” a May 5 conference held at the City University of New York (CUNY) Academic Commons. The session featured a presentation by K|N Consultants principals Rebecca Kennison and Lisa Norberg, who were joined by Martin Burke and Jessie Daniels of the CUNY Graduate Center, and Ken Wissoker, editorial director at Duke University Press, for a lively and informative discussion of OAN, K|N’s newest initiative, which will launch in mid-May.