Thursday, September 13, 2012

Moving towards an open access future: the role of academic libraries.

Last April a group of librarians and industry experts met for a roundtable discussion regarding the role of academic libraries in an increasing open access environment. The roundtable resulted in a report published in August 2012: Moving towards an open access future: the role of academic libraries.

The report's conclusions:
Open access is becoming more important as a way of communicating research findings, particularly driven by strong policy moves in Europe and to some extent in North America.

Academic libraries and research communication will change as open access grows in importance. Some of libraries’ traditional roles will be reduced and others will need to change, but libraries still have an important role to play in managing and advising on information and information-related budgets.

The roundtable discussion identified a number of key aspects of the role of academic libraries in an open access future. Libraries need to evolve and be prepared to be creative, as the ways that researchers and students access and use information are changing and will continue to change. Libraries will also play an essential role in explaining open access to researchers.

As resources become open access and therefore not tied to a particular institutional subscription, there will be an increasing trend to sharing discovery and support services among libraries and institutions. This will require greater dialogue between libraries about strategies for dealing with open access and best practices.
With a willingness to be creative and to support users in new ways through communication, collaboration and tools, academic libraries should remain an important component of the research process in their institutions and beyond.

No comments: