Dear Irina and colleagues,
Thank you for pointing us (2 August) to this paper on self-archiving among academic librarians in Africa.
CITATION: Baro, E., Tralagba, E. and Ebiagbe, E. (2018), "Knowledge and use of self-archiving options among academic librarians working in universities in Africa", Information and Learning Sciences, Vol. 119 No. 3/4, pp. 145-160. https://doi.org/10.1108/ILS-01-2018-0003
ABSTRACT: An online survey was designed using SurveyMonkey software to collect data from 455 academic librarians working in 52 universities in Africa. The study revealed that the academic librarians in Africa are aware of ResearchGate, institutional repository, personal website/server, kudos and Mendeley and they actually upload papers to self-archiving platforms such as institutional repository, ResearchGate, academia.edu and personal websites/servers. Factors such as increased exposure of one's previously published work, provides exposure for works not previously published (e.g. seminar papers), broadens the dissemination of academic research generally and increases one's institutions visibility were among the options the academic librarians rated as very important factors that motivate them to submit their scholarly output to the self-archiving options. It was also found that majority of the academic librarians in Africa checked the publishers' website for copyright policy compliance before submitting their papers to the platform.
Ironically the paper is restricted-access. The authors have uploaded it to ResearchGate, but it is available on request only (in practice, this means you may or may not eventually obtain the paper - does anyone know why full-text papers on ResearchGate are not routinely made available immediately?).
Awareness of open-access respoitories is a sine qua non for academic librarianship. What is perhaps even more important is the advocacy role of academic librarians in promoting awareness of open-access repositories among students and faculty at large. I would be interested to hear from librarians worldwide about their work in this regard.
Best wishes, Neil
Coordinator, HIFA Project on Access to Health Research
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