Thursday, October 16, 2008

CLA Announces new Open Access Interest Group

The following announcement was sent by Ken Roberts, Canadian Library Association President, to the CLA list on October 14, 2008, the First International Open Access Day.

This September, the CLA Executive approved the formation of a new Open Access Interest Group. Today, it is my pleasure on this First International Open Access Day (, to officially announce the formation of this group!

This group will follow on the recent work carried out by the CLA Open Access Task Force and will focus on one of the most important issues in the library world at present, particularly in the academic library community. The Open Access Interest Group will incorporate elements of the Information Commons Interest Group, which will be reconstituted.

The first co-conveners of the Interest Group will be Leah Vanderjagt and Lisa Goddard.

Terms of Reference
· To provide a forum for members to discuss issues and topics relating to Open Access.
· When requested, to respond to Open Access matters on behalf of CLA.
· To work with both Canadian and international organizations (including other CLA/ACB Interest Groups and Committees) to promote Open Access initiatives.
· To organize Open Access-related sessions and other events at the annual CLA/ACB conference and elsewhere.

Membership in the Open Access Interest Group is open to all CLA members. The CLA website is being modified to allow registration in this group; expect a follow-up message when this is ready. In the meantime, you can sign up for the CLA Open Access Interest Group listserv by contacting Heather Morrison at The purpose of this listserv is to allow participants to share ideas and news about open access at their respective institutions, in Canada, and in the global information environment.

This May, CLA adopted a Position Statement on Open Access for Canadian Libraries, which reads:

Whereas connecting users with the information they need is one of the library's most essential functions, and access to information is one of librarianship's most cherished values, therefore CLA recommends that Canadian libraries of all types strongly support and encourage open access.

CLA encourages Canadian libraries of all types to:
· support and encourage policies requiring open access to research supported by Canadian public funding, as defined above. If delay or embargo periods are permitted to accommodate publisher concerns, these should be considered temporary, to provide publishers with an opportunity to adjust, and a review period should be built in, with a view to decreasing or eliminating any delay or embargo period.
· raise awareness of library patrons and other key stakeholders about open access, both the concept and the many open access resources, through means appropriate to each library, such as education campaigns and promoting open access resources.
· support the development of open access in all of its varieties, including gold (OA publishing) and green (OA self-archiving). Libraries should consider providing economic and technical support for open access publishing, by supporting open access journals or by participating in the payment of article processing fees for open access. The latter could occur through redirection of funds that would otherwise support journal subscriptions, or through taking a leadership position in coordinating payments by other bodies, such as academic or government departments or funding agencies.
· support and encourage authors to retain their copyright, for example through the use of the CARL / SPARC Author's Addendum, or through the use of Creative Commons licensing.

The CLA Position Statement on Open Access for Canadian Libraries is freely available on the CLA website, at:

For further information, please contact:
Heather Morrison
Interim Convenor, CLA Open Access Interest Group
heatherm at eln dot bc dotc a
Lisa Goddard
Co-Convenor, CLA Open Access Interest Group
lgoddard at mun dot ca
Leah Vanderjagt
Co-Convenor, CLA Open Access Interest Group
leah dot vanderjagt at ualberta dot ca

Ken Roberts, CLA President

Thanks, CLA, Ken Roberts, Lisa Goddard and Leah Vanderjagt for initiating yet another fine example of Canadian Leadership in the Open Access Movement! Thanks, also, to all of the many CLA members who supported the proposal for the development of this new interest group.