Thursday, 18 February 2010

OA in Kenya

. An important workshop, titled ‘Open Access and the Evolving Scholarly Communication Environment’ has been held in Nairobi, Kenya.

Organised by the Kenyan Libraries and Information Services Consortium, Bioline International and, the workshop’s objective was to discuss how open access can maximise the visibility of research publications and improve the quality, impact and influence of research. Some of the questions discussed were:

- How to disseminate research results in the most efficient way?
- How to showcase the quality of research in universities and research institutions?
- What are the new tools to better measure and manage research in such institutions?
- How to collect and curate the digital outputs?
- How to generate new knowledge from existing findings, enable and encourage collaboration?
- How to bring savings to the higher education sector and better returns on investment?
- What are the key functions for research libraries?

Open access, as a viable solution to existing problems in scholarly communication, is now being debated by governments and publishers and mandated by funding bodies and universities throughout the world. The considerable economic, social and educational benefits to making research outputs available without financial, legal and technical barriers to access, and strategies for collective advocacy of open access to research results, were discussed. Practical sessions included case studies on successful management of open repositories and open access journals, training on how to start, and the best approaches to collaborative promotion of research outputs.

EPT Trustee and associate director of Bioline International, Leslie Chan, was a major contributor and fellow-Trustee, Daisy Ouya, was also present. There are currently 20 African bioscience journals available on an open access basis via Bioline, and 31 African open access institutional repositories, 20 of which are in South Africa.

No comments: