Columbia Libraries Participate in Eighth Annual Open Access Week
NEW YORK, October 22, 2015 –


Open Access Week, a global event now entering its eighth year, is an opportunity for the academic and research community to continue to learn about the potential benefits of Open Access, to share what they’ve learned with colleagues, and to help inspire wider participation in helping to make Open Access a new norm in scholarship and research.  Columbia University Libraries is committed to making scholarly research free and available to the public online in a number of ways.


Academic Commons, Columbia’s research repository, preserves and makes available research outputs in any format, including, but not limited to, journal articles, book chapters, working papers, conference proceedings, and datasets. There are currently over 16,400 items in Academic Commons including 2,250 doctoral dissertations and hundreds of master’s and undergraduate theses.

The Scholarly Communication Program supports the global reach and impact of research produced at Columbia University. We explore and raise awareness about new tools, initiatives, and services —including resources on open access— that help Columbia faculty, students, and staff more effectively communicate the results of their research and scholarship.

The Columbia Open Access Publication Fund will underwrite reasonable article-processing fees for open access journals when funds are not otherwise available.

"The libraries are building sustained programs to promote global access to Columbia-authored published works and more,” said Mark Newton, Interim Director, Center for Digital Research and Scholarship.  “The 16,000+ items in our Academic Commons repository have been downloaded millions of times, and faculty are sharing more high-impact research every day."

Columbia faculty benefit significantly from the Libraries’ commitment to open access, particularly in the area of greater visibility of scholarly output.  

"Academic Commons is an important way that Columbia makes our scholarship accessible and discoverable,” said Sharon Marcus, Dean of Humanities, and Orlando Harriman professor of English and Comparative Literature, Columbia University. “Open access has been incredibly effective in helping my writing reach new and important audiences." 

Alex Bowers, Associate Professor of Educational Leadership at Teacher’s College, noted of a recent paper posted to Academic Commons “how excellent the Academic Commons data tracking is, as the paper has had some nice press over the last few years, and was just featured on a blog that received quite a bit of social media attention.”  

According to the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition’s (SPARC) press release: “ ‘Open Access’ to information – the free, immediate, online access to the results of scholarly research, and the right to use and re-use those results as you need – has the power to transform the way research and scientific inquiry are conducted. It has direct and widespread implications for academia, medicine, science, industry, and for society as a whole.

Open Access has the potential to maximize research investments, increase the exposure and use of published research, facilitate the ability to conduct research across available literature, and enhance the overall advancement of scholarship. Research funding agencies, academic institutions, researchers and scientists, teachers, students, and members of the general public are supporting a move towards Open Access in increasing numbers every year. Open Access Week is a key opportunity for all members of the community to take action to keep this momentum moving forward.

OA Week is an invaluable chance to connect the global momentum toward open sharing with the advancement of policy changes on the local level. Universities, colleges, research institutes, funding agencies, libraries, and think tanks have used Open Access Week as a platform to host faculty votes on campus open-access policies, to issue reports on the societal and economic benefits of Open Access, to commit new funds in support of open-access publication, and more.  The official hashtags for International Open Access Week is #oaweek. Learn more on the Open Access Week website."

Columbia University Libraries is one of the top five academic research library systems in North America. The collections include over 13 million volumes, over 160,000 journals and serials, as well as extensive electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, maps, and graphic and audio-visual materials. The Libraries employs more than 400 professional and support staff and hosts over 4.7 million visitors each year.  The website of the Libraries is the gateway to its services and resources:

AM 10-22-15