In my blog and newsletter, I try to keep track of new literature about open access to scientific and scholarly research literature. On occasion, some highly relevant articles are published in journals that do not offer open access. I can usually link to these articles, but only journal subscribers are able to click through to full text.
If you have written such an article, please deposit it in an open-access archive or repository. Two open-access archives devoted to library and information science have agreed to accept articles on the topic of open access:
- dLIST, Digital Library of Information Science and Technology, hosted by the University of Arizona.
- E-LIS, E-Prints in Library and Information Science, hosted by Research in Computing, Library and Information Science (RCLIS).
The only condition is that you have the permission of the copyright holder. If you transferred the copyright to a journal when you published the article, then you will need the journal's permission to archive the postprint (the version approved by the peer-review process). But in almost every case, you are the copyright holder for the preprint (the version you submitted to the journal) and may deposit it without anyone else's permission. I hope you will deposit the postprint if you have permission and the preprint otherwise. (For publisher policies on copyright and archiving, see the searchable SHERPA database or the dLIST table specifically for journals in library and information science.)
Key step: if you do deposit your article, then please send me the URL for the new, open-access edition. I'll blog it just one example of how open access helps you find readers and helps readers find you.
Both E-LIS and dLIST comply with the Open Archives Initiative metadata harvesting protocol. That makes them interoperable with other OAI-compliant archives so that users needn't visit separate archives to run separate searches. OAI tools help users find your work even if they don't know which archives exist, where they are located, or what they contain.
I urge all scientists and scholars to deposit their research articles in OAI-compliant archives. I especially urge authors of articles about open access to make their work openly accessible in this way. If your institution has its own OAI-compliant archive, that's just as good and you should use it instead of E-LIS or dLIST. The same goes for any other OAI-compliant archive where you might have an existing relationship. But at least know that E-LIS and dLIST are open to you if you need them.
If the idea of providing open access to research articles by depositing them in open-access, OAI-compliant archives is new to you, then see the Self-Archiving FAQ from the Budapest Open Access Initiative. If you're curious about what else you can to do promote open access, then see my list.
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Research Professor of Philosophy, Earlham College
Open Access Project Director, Public Knowledge
Senior Researcher, SPARC