Open Access Week 2011 Recap

Last week, October 24-28 was Open Access Week, “an opportunity for the academic and research community to continue to learn about the potential benefits of Open Access, to share what they’ve learned with colleagues, and to help inspire wider participation in helping to make Open Access a new norm in scholarship and research.” (Quoted from Open Access Week web site)  Here’s what happened at Dominican.

Throughout the week, 11 faculty members, in disciplines ranging from Spanish to Psychology, agreed to publish their scholarship in our new repository, Constellation.  This includes article pre- and post-prints, and even some publisher versions of articles.  Most of them are already in Constellation; a few more will be added shortly.  Thank you to those faculty members, all of whom responded within only a few hours of my initial email.  As faculty publish new research, we will determine that research’s eligibility to be included in Constellation and contact faculty accordingly.

On Wednesday night, Clifford Lynch, Director of the Coalition for Networked Information, spoke in the Recital Hall on “Names and Lives in the Cultural Record.”  With the Internet, digital publishing, blogs, Twitter and more, just about anyone can become a creator of content, an author.  The question is raised, then: How to keep track of all those names?  Though Lynch’s talk did not directly relate to open access, some connections can be made.   With Internet publishing, much of that new content is open access.

Faculty, I hope you got some open access chocolate.  I visited each academic building to pass out candy wrapped in information about open access, author rights and self-archiving.  Faculty members weren’t always in their offices at the times I stopped by, but I had several good conversations.  I talked with a few faculty members about their specific research and the journals in which they usually publish, and followed up with email later in the week.  These conversations, plus the quick email responses mentioned above, indicate that Dominican faculty get it.  They understand their rights as authors and want to make their research available.

Finally, I checked in with Dominican’s fellow LIBRAS institutions that are also using Constellation.  After getting them started with the repository a few weeks ago, Open Access Week was the perfect time to see how it’s going on their campuses.

Constellation and publishing scholarship from our faculty, students and staff is, of course, an on-going thing.  But Open Access Week allows us to take time out of our busy, varied jobs to concentrate on such things.  Our Week was successful and laid the groundwork for continued success.

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