On “Introduction to Open Access” and “Open Access Infrastructure”

On “Introduction to Open Access” and “Open Access Infrastructure”

As with the Open Access for Researchers UNESCO curriculum,Open Access for Library Schools was developed under UNESCO’s Open Access Program. On their website UNESCO writes, “The carefully designed and developed sets of OA curricula for researchers and library and information professionals are based on two needs assessment surveys, and several rounds of face-to-face and online consultations with relevant stakeholders” (n.p.). I’ve read over a couple of the modules that appear to be most pertinent for my research, and will offer brief responses below. Both of these modules provide an overview of OA elements and practices.

In Module 1, “Introduction to Open Access,” Uma Kanjilal offers a general overview of OA in the library context. She gathers and presents information on topics that pertain directly to OA and libraries: the research lifecycle, data management, the history of scholarly publishing, preservation models, intellectual property, licensing, OA advocacy, metrics, impact, and the benefits of and arguments against OA. In doing so, she provides a comprehensive sense of the conceptual and practical evolution of OA, as well as current areas that libraries play a role in. Kanjilal posits libraries as active supporters and players in the OA movement, but considers libraries to be much more squarely positioned in information management, access, and archival rather than publishing. This module succeeds in providing a significant amount of information while avoiding being overly prescriptive; rather, Kanjilal educates libraries on all of the different activities and areas they must be familiar with to facilitate open access in their institutions.

In Module 2, “Open Access Infrastructure,” Ian Smith works with the larger curriculum development team to provide information on library-specific infrastructure for OA. He focuses, primarily, on the infrastructure necessary to run an institutional repository and to host OA journals. Smith does not delve into technical detail regarding the software implementation required, but he does offer a comprehensive overview of the successful implementation of OA infrastructure, especially from an administrative perspective. Of note, Smith supplies business plan templates for setting up both a repository and a journal, which seem very practical.

Works Cited

Kanjilal, Uma. 2015. “Introduction to Open Access.” In Open Access for Libraries. 81pp. Paris: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

Smith, Ian. 2015. “Open Access Infrastructure.” Paris: United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. n.d. “UNESCO’s Open Access (OA) Curriculum is now online.” http://en.unesco.org/news/unesco-s-open-access-oa-curriculum-now-online

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