Re: Central versus institutional self-archiving: 6 Mantras

From: Leslie Carr <>
Date: Mon, 10 Mar 2008 09:53:10 +0000

On 10 Mar 2008, at 09:11, Andy Powell wrote:

> Well, I hope that you are right... I certainly don't have the will or
> ability to fight a political and technical agenda that has become so
> entrenched worldwide and that says there is only one 'right' way of
> achieving OA.

Those who are involved in Open Access lobbying will be interested to hear
that they have gone from being an ignored, sidelined special interest group,
to being an entrenched worldwide movement. Even those who shout loudest for
institutional repositories are doing so not because of some predisposition
towards dogma, but because they seem the favourite choice out of a number of
practical alternatives.

Saying that we want to "build compelling scholarly social networks" or
"surface scholarly content on the Web" is just another way of restating a
shared goal of Open Access. Saying that "we might be better to start by
thinking in terms of the social networks that currently exist in the
research community" is to confirm what happened five years ago when the
difference between discipline-grounded and institutionally-grounded
repositories was being thrashed out. You comment that "social networks ...
are largely independent of the institution", but that is only to take into
account SOME facets of an researcher's social network - in particular it is
to ignore the researcher's career development, promotion and contractual

However, no-one who backs Open Access can afford to pish-tush any sound,
practical and tested ideas about improving takeup, so bring them on! In
fact, lay them down as part of the Developer Challenge in the forthcoming
Open Repositories conference, and see if we can't get any of them prototyped
for you. Web 2.0/social networks are taking up two sessions, so clearly
repositories are already experimenting with these channels.

But in the meantime, we have to recognise that titivating a user interface
isn't go to turn anyone from a "heads down, don't have time to do what you
ask" researcher into a grateful repository convert or even a Web 2.0 user!
Les Carr
Received on Mon Mar 10 2008 - 09:53:50 GMT

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