Open Access Week 2011

The Open Access Week goes into its fifth year in 2011, promoting Open Access as a new norm in scholarship and research. It takes place from October 24 to 30 in many places around the globe.

“This year, programs highlighting publishing and rights management choices for faculty authors, use of new media, and opportunities created by re-mixing and re-using scholarly materials are on tap. Open Educational Resources are another key topic, as is open-source technology” (see more details in the 2011 announcement).

In collaboration with SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), who are the organisers of the event, I have created an updated map of this year’s activities around the world. It connects to the map that we created last year for the 2010 event. The map shows a picture of the world according to the number of planned activities to be organised by country along forthcoming Open Access Week. Comparing this picture to last year, it can be seen that the participation in the event is slowly changing and very similar to last year. Comparing this picture to the proportion of scientific papers produced in the world (as shown on worldmapper), this picture can be seen as a welcoming trend for a higher awareness for free accessibility of the knowledge that is produced in the wealthier world. The importance of Open Access in the poorer parts of the world, as reflected in next week’s OA2011 activities in India and parts of Africa, are as important as the awareness for Open Access in general, as this can help to make research from those countries visible and accessible in a wider context (read more about this topic in Pablo de Castro’s contribution in the BioMed Blog).

Map of activities during the Open Access Week 2011(click for larger map)

Academic publications should be available for the world to read, to learn from, to build upon.
(Ben Adida)

The countries we work with can’t afford journals; they’re already paying an arm and a leg for textbooks.
(Sir John Daniel)

The least we should expect is that the outputs of this tax-payer funded activity should be freely available to all.
(Martin Weller)

The above quotes were taken from the compilation Why Open Access? created by Alex Holcombe.

BioMed Central brought to my attention that the Open Access Africa 2011 speaker presentations, images and poster abstracts are now available online. They write about the event: “Open Access Africa 2011, a free BioMed Central and Computer Aid International event, was hosted at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Kumasi, Ghana, during Open Access Week 2011.
All presentations, delivered by representatives from Google, British Medical Journal (BMJ), Department for International Development (DFID), Pan African Medical Journal and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa(UNECA), are now available online, together with conference images and poster abstracts. Videos of all presentations will follow shortly.
The conference, now in its second year, discussed open access publishing in an African context and the diverse programme offered insights from library, funding and technology perspectives as part of Open Access Africa, a collection of initiatives designed to increase the output and visibility of scientific research published by African learning institutes. The birth of Sudan’s first Institutional Repository, created by the University of Khartoum, was a direct result of a meeting held last year at Open Access Africa 2010. What further developments will be sparked by this year’s event?
Dr. Tobias I. Ndubuisi Ezejiofor, one of the attending delegates, commented, ‘For us in Africa, open access means liberation from information inhibitions and from research/publication visibility clouds. Indeed the trappings and benefits of open access can hardly be over estimated that I am sufficiently led to say: ‘I see a great future for quality research and publication outputs for and from African scientists and professionals through the open access initiative.’

Find all details and material on the BioMed Central website and help ensure a better future for African science.

The content on this page has been created by Benjamin D. Hennig. You are free use the material under Creative Commons conditions (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0); please contact me for further details. I also appreciate a message if you used my maps somewhere else. High resolution and customized maps are available on request.

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