As a reference librarian, I’m keenly following developments in the Open Access (OA) movement, because I (along with all of you folks also working with researchers) am aware of how journal and serial costs have gotten so large and burdensome to libraries that titles must be cut, and thus, access to important research is becoming ever more difficult for students, faculty, and other scholars around the world. So I was intrigued when I saw last June that Harvard Library’s Office for Scholarly Communication (OSC) had awarded a contract to three individuals—David Solomon, Bo-Christer Björk, and Mikael Laakso—to “write a comprehensive literature review on methods for converting subscription-based scholarly journals to open access.” The OSC calls this the “journal flipping project.” When I heard that the preliminary version of their report, Converting Scholarly Journals to Open Access: A Review of Approaches and Experiences, was available for public comment, I took a look at what it says.
Open Access publishing has led to a proliferation of peer-reviewed articles. Librarians and researchers have a more challenging task when it comes to finding what they need. It has never been a simple task to locate relevant information. Entire disciplines of library science are devoted to the complicated task of indexing and retrieving published findings. However, under traditional models, that process was relatively predictable.
As the first in a series of discussions about Librarians & the Changing Scholarly Environment, sponsored by Sage, we explored the Open Science initiative with Jill Emery, Collection Development Librarian, Portland State University, OR, and Robin Champieux, School of Communication Librarian, Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU). Readers will get a better understanding of how open our literature is today, the perspective of senior scientists, and how open science applies to aggregated databases.
A look at the EU’s newly announced Open Science Policy Platform, and the long-term implications of Open Science for librarians and other information curators. In this series, we’ll be examining the implications of Open Access (or OA) publishing of peer reviewed journal content on academic and public libraries. OA is of course part of a larger phenomenon—the movement to make science itself accessible to everyone. Like OA, Open Science (OS) has broad implications for those charged with the curation of knowledge.
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.
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.
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.
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.