Imagine if all the UK’s open access research publications were available from a single place, clearly identified with their provenance and the rights that readers had to use them...
Following David Prosser, executive director of RLUK’s blog on ‘fighting for discoverability’, there was much Twitter activity about our Open Mirror project to see if a world is possible where all the UK’s open access research is easily found all in one place.
To get us off the ground we asked the questions:
- What roles can our academic libraries play as we move into an open access world?
- What value can our institutional repositories add to scholarly communication?
It was in considering these questions that the idea of the Open Mirror was born. It was developed in Jisc’s new co-design process, whereby we work with some of our key partners – in this case led by RLUK – jointly to reflect on and prioritise some of our work. We at Jisc, were given the challenge and mandate to investigate the feasibility and value of an Open Mirror.
But what is an Open Mirror?
Imagine if all the UK’s open access research publications were available from a single place, clearly identified with their provenance and the rights that readers had to use them; that is the Open Mirror. It might enable the UK academic community more easily to curate that corpus, or make it more easily discoverable through a variety of online channels. It might enable text-mining, it might provide some very interesting business intelligence data for UK universities and researchers. It might join up with some international initiatives such as OpenAIRE in Europe and SHARE in the US to build a global view of the open access research literature.
It might. We along with our fellow co-designers are investigating whether these benefits would be real, and what combination of systems might be best suited to realising them. Bearing in mind the repository infrastructure already maintained by UK academic libraries, our starting point is there, but the vision is inclusive; it would need to work with others – research funders and their systems (such as Europe PubMed Central), and publishers of open access material, for example.
What do you think?
We also really want your views, too, so can really get a sense of the value, benefits, costs, risks and feasibility of the Open Mirror. What do you think? Please let us know by leaving a comment below or via Twitter @Jisc. You can find out more specific information about the project on our blog.