Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Friday, December 02, 2005

Eric Lease Morgan's trip to OAI4

Eric Lease Morgan has written a log on the OAI4 meeting in Geneva (October 20-22, 2005). Excerpt:
Herbert Van de Sompel (Los Alamos National Laboratory) opened up the main session with "What's new from the OAI?" In a nutshell, Van de Sompel reviewed the success of the OAI-PMH protocol, and he advocated the protocol be used to harvest not only meta-data, but data itself....Eric Lease Morgan (University of Notre Dame) described how us Ockham-ites used various open source tools and "light-weight" protocols to create MyLibrary@Ockham....If I understand [John] Bollen's conclusions correctly, the ISI impact factors for particular journals match rather closely with the results of his statistical analysis. I believe Bollen's presentation has affected my thinking regarding the implementation of the University Libraries of Notre Dame institutional repository. If I can demonstrate to authors that their impact factor increases through the use of open access publishing techniques, then I think I will have an easier time convincing authors to contribute. Tim Brody (University of Southampton) advocated the use of OpenURL's to the output of OAI responses to improve retrieval of described records as well as to facilitate the implementation of additional services against the content....Alma Swan (Key Perspectives, Ltd.) was a consultant who provided a very good overview of the open access movement....I then attended another workshop. This one was called "Our authors are central" and it outlined steps in the creation of an institutional repository. True to the title, it advocated user-centered design in the creation of repositories. Save their time. Create publication lists for them. Make their content more visible. Do not describe the repository as a solution to the librarian's serials pricing crisis problem because that is a non-issue for authors. It was in this workshop where I first articulated for myself, "institutional repositories are not replacements but a supplement to scholarly communication and ArXiv is a good example." Jennifer De Beer (Stellenbosch University) described the open access publishing efforts taking place in South Africa. Bill Hubbard (SHERPA) described OpenDOAR as a directory of open access institutional repositories. It is analogous to DOAJ, the Directory of Open Access Journals. He described OpenDOAR as a tool for many types of users: administrators, funders, IR managers, service providers, open access advocates and stakeholders....Most importantly, I learned about some of the challenges of creating and maintaining institutional repositories. The issues are not necessarily technical but rather social, legal, and political. I sincerely believe open access publishing through things like institutional repositories can supplement and enhance the scholarly communications process. The goal is not to remove traditional print publishing, but to increase the sphere of knowledge in the most effective means possible. Geneva was beautiful.