ACCESS | Asia 's Newspaper on Electronic Information Product & Service
June 2008 No.65  
   In this issue

Fiesole Collection Development Retreat – the Asian perspective on a European conference
by Ruth A Pagell


This year marked the 10th anniversary of the Fiesole Collection Development Retreat. Putting aside the villas, the Tuscany countryside, the wine and the living history museum that is Florence, the meeting is a wake-up call for Asian libraries to educate their home institutions and their funding agencies on the importance of sharing the results of sponsored research.

The themes and discussions of this meeting built on those that ACCESS reported on the 9th retreat in Hong Kong.

Last year the discussion on Open Access and repositories focused on the Asian perspective. The focus this year was European and there are two major takeaways for Asian libraries and their funding agencies:
1. There is growing cooperation within countries and the European region to share publications.
2. Funding agencies are requiring deposit and some level of public access to materials created through their funding.

There has been growth of institutional repositories at the individual institution, regional, country and multi-national levels. What goes into the repository and is available to the public relates to the open access question.

Europe is especially active in this area. The Nordic countries are working together to coordinate their repositories and the individual countries are providing grants for research that require some publication.(1) The European Digital Library is taking this a step further and working across not only the EU but also the other countries of Europe.(2)

These countries are also under government pressure to register the scholarly output with their funding bodies and are concerned about the burden on authors to register and deposit. The perspective of the research libraries and the research granting agencies is to make some level of information available to the public in repositories. Publishers also are recognizing that they have a vested interest in showcasing articles from their journals because they, like faculty and deans, track Thomson Scientific’s Journal Impact Factor.

Ponte Vecchio

I am not aware of an initiative in Singapore that addresses the level of scholarly communication, cooperation, and public availability that we are hearing about in Europe. The only project at this time is National Library Board’s National Directory of Scholars, covering faculty in humanities and social sciences. A small number of our faculty deposited their profiles and we are talking with NLB about some coordination between their Directory and our Repository.

(1) Ingegerd Rabow, Nordic Open Access: Backgrounds and Developments [PDF document (161 KB); power point document (711 KB)]

(2)  Elisabeth Niggemann, The European Digital Library [PDF document (255 KB); power point document (922 KB)] For more articles from the Retreat, attendees and a summary by Tony Ferguson, check out the Fiesole website. V Ruth A Pagell, is the University Librarian, Singapore Management University, Singapore.

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