■ What is Open Access?
- Changing Modes of Academic and Scholarly Communication
- Ever since their inception, academic journals have always played a central role in academic and scholarly communication. In spite of growing communication over the Internet and the transition from paper media to e-journals thanks to the development of the PDF format, their status has not changed at all. Rather, one might even say that their weight in academic and scholarly communication has become even greater due to the growth of e-journals, which transcends temporal and spatial constraints while ensuring quality through peer review systems. However, there is also a problem.
- "The Serials Crisis" (The Crisis of Academic Journals)
- Since the 1990s, the price of academic journals has been rising at an unusual pace. As more and more libraries and researchers stop subscribing to journals for financial reasons, the number of subscriptions shrinks, raising the price of journals even higher. In short, we are caught in a negative spiral of "shrinking subscriptions => price hike => shrinking subscriptions => price hike ...." In the meantime, the number of academic journal titles subscribed to by Japanese university libraries has fallen remarkably. Though the situation at Kyoto University is not at its worst, it has become very difficult for researchers at other smaller universities and institutions to obtain literature essential for their research. It is now quite common to see an institution unable to afford even journal issues that carry articles by its own researchers. From the viewpoint of researchers, it means they are losing more and more potential readers of their research output.
- Open Access Movement
- Against this backdrop, efforts to create an environment that enables free online access to full texts of all sorts of academic literature for anyone has gained momentum. The attempt is to eliminate economic barriers based on the perspective that academic and scholarly knowledge is a common resource to be shared by all humankind beyond time and regions (open access movement). One form of this is the launch of free electronic journals (open access journals) while another is the move to post journal articles on the websites of authors’ institutions upon being submitted to peer-reviewed journals. One example of this is the
Budapest Open Access Initiative .
- Institutional Repository
- KURENAI aims to be Kyoto University’s core system for this second form of the open access movement--namely, the institutional online publication of papers. According to one statistic, papers posted on the Internet for free public access have five to six times as many citations as non-online papers because they are visible to a larger number of researchers (in the area of physics)※. KURENAI archives research papers, conference papers and teaching materials produced by KU researchers and posts them on the Internet so that researchers worldwide can view them freely. By providing free online access to its collections, KURENAI boosts the visibility of your research output, cultivates potential readers and supplements the conventional channels of academic and scholarly information distribution.
※ Stevan Harnad. Comparing the Impact of Open Access (OA) vs. Non-OA Articles in the Same Journals. D-Lib Magazine, v.10, no.6 (June 2004)
■ Handling of Copyrights at the Time of Registration
- If you are the sole copyright holder, you can register the content on your own.
- If you and your coauthor(s) own the copyright, you can register the content with the agreement of your coauthor(s).
- According to the SHERPA/RoMEO Project, 70% of academic journals--including those from major publishers like Elsevier and Blackwell--allow articles to be put on the server of the author’s institution for free public access. (Such publishers and journals are called Green Publisher and Green Journal , respectively.) In that case, you can register the content without obtaining further approval. However, because many publishing companies do not permit registration of their own files with layouts that they have created (although a small minority of publishers like PLOS ONE permit their files to be registered on the Web), you will be advised to submit the author’s final version of the file kept by the author. (For the definition of an "author’s final version," please see the chart below created by the Hokkaido University Library. Thank you, Hokudai!)
- If an academic society or publisher holds the copyright but does not permit papers to be offered for free public access on institutional servers, you will need to obtain the society’s or publisher’s approval before registering the content.
The Kyoto University Library will check the handling of copyrights with respect to publishers, such as 3 and 4 above, including the detailed conditions for authorization.
［See also］Survey on the copyright terms of Japanese academic societies (Japanese)
The copyright continues to be held by the author or the original publisher. KURENAI permits only private use, such as viewing. Therefore, for uses beyond private use, users will have to ask the author (or the copyright holder) for permission.
Or, alternatively, copyright holders can minimize the hassle of handling such inquires by accepting usage under the terms of the Creative Commons "Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike" Public License (Japanese law compliant version). For further details on this license, please see here
Creative Commons is an international initiative that minimizes the obstacles or inconveniences arising from the use of materials published on the Internet and other media, such as authors (copyright holders) having to define the scope of copyright for their works of authorship or users having to make inquires to the author (copyright holder). It proposes a system of licenses to facilitate the reuse of the output of intellectual activities.