OpenEmory provides repository for faculty's published research

Celebrates Open Access Week with informative panels, webcasts

Published 10-09-2013

OpenEmory, the open access repository for Emory-authored published research articles, is marking some milestones lately. It celebrated its one year anniversary in September, and as of October 3, it surpassed 1,800 articles uploaded to the site and logged an impressive 9,912 article downloads.

And with the internationally celebrated Open Access Week coming up Oct. 21-27, the staff at OpenEmory has a roster of speakers, panels and other events that will examine the benefits, effects and issues that occur with open access (see schedule below).

OpenEmory is a service of Emory Library and Information Technology Services (LITS). The library’s Scholarly Communications Office, under the leadership of director Lisa Macklin and located in the Robert W. Woodruff Library, manages the repository.

Open access is the practice of providing unrestricted access to scholarship published online. The international movement gained tremendous momentum in the U.S. in 2008 when the NIH Public Access Policy went into effect, some eight years after the launch of PubMed Central, a free database of life sciences research articles. Emory University adopted its open access policy in 2011 to encourage faculty to share their published journal articles and provide a university-based repository. In February 2013, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy issued a directive that all federal agencies with research funding over $100 million must develop plans to make any peer-reviewed articles and digital data sets resulting from this federal funding open, available and accessible to the public.

Why use OpenEmory?

Macklin says OpenEmory provides several benefits, not the least of which is helping faculty reach new audiences.

“It’s a way for faculty to make their articles available, findable and accessible to anyone in the world; therefore, it can help them build their reputation,” Macklin says. “They can and should publish in whatever journal they choose, and depending on publisher policy, can put a version of the article in OpenEmory. Their articles are then much more widely available than a subscription journal, and may be cited more often.”

As more content is available in OpenEmory, it becomes a useful tool for faculty and graduate students to identify others at Emory who are working either in similar areas or in areas they’re interested in. “It’s a way to showcase our research and build community at Emory that we don’t really have other forums for,” Macklin says.

It also supports the underlying mission of the university, which is to generate new knowledge, while also preserving the scholarship for the long term. OpenEmory tracks views and downloads of each article, so faculty who have articles in OpenEmory have data on how frequently their research is accessed. Each article also has a permanent URL which faculty can easily email to colleagues or link to on websites.

Mission: Supporting faculty without adding to faculty workload

For articles that resulted from NIH funding and fall under the NIH Public Access Policy, faculty don’t need to do anything. Those articles are identified and added to OpenEmory by the staff. For other articles, the only thing faculty need to do to get started using OpenEmory is to send a list of published articles (such as a CV, website link, or file from Google Scholar) to OpenEmory staff. Staff will review the list and determine the publisher policy for each article.

Faculty members don’t have to upload the articles themselves – the OpenEmory staff will do that for them, with the faculty member’s permission. If the publisher won’t allow the final published version to be deposited, the staff will ask the faculty member if they have previous versions of the article they would like to make available in OpenEmory.

But that’s one of the challenges OpenEmory faces, Macklin says: If it’s an article they published some time ago, faculty often don’t have anything other than the final published version to submit, and many journal publishers – certainly subscription-based ones – don’t permit the published version of articles to be republished. Considering submission of an article to OpenEmory close to the time of publication can make the process easier.

To encourage publishing in open access journals, OpenEmory has also set up the Open Access Publishing Fund, available to current faculty and students, which covers article processing fees when no other funds are available. To date, the fund has helped Emory researchers publish seven articles in open access journals (requests can be made here).

With almost 10,000 article downloads from the site, the OpenEmory repository seems to be doing well, but Macklin would like to see more Emory faculty contact the staff to deposit their published articles. “We’re trying to create a long-term resource, and part of that is collecting the intellectual output of Emory as well as preserving it,” she says. “We need to build more awareness that OpenEmory is available and how faculty can benefit from using it.”

For more information, contact Lisa Macklin at

Open Access Week 2013 Emory events

Open Access Week, October 21-27, is a global event in its sixth year which seeks to promote open access for scholarship and research, and the theme this year is “Redefining Impact.” Emory Library and Information Technology Services (LITS) is hosting several events to raise awareness of open access in the Emory community. “Our goal in facilitating these events is to foster discussion around the impact of open access publishing on scholarly reach and reputation with Emory faculty and students,” says Melanie Kowalski, Open Access Week committee chair, and librarian in the Scholarly Communications Office.

All events are free and open to the public. Emory’s Robert W. Woodruff Library is located at 540 Asbury Cir., Atlanta 30322. Up to date information is available at

For more information, please contact Melanie Kowalski at

Monday, Oct. 21, 12-1:30 pm
Jones Room, Woodruff Library Level 3
Emory Faculty Panel: The Impact of Open Access Publishing on Scholarly Communication

An Emory faculty panel will discuss personal experiences in Open Access publishing and its impact from the perspective of both scholarly authors and Open Access journal editors. A light lunch will be provided. Panelists: Dr. Rustom Antia (biology), Dr. Rex Matthews (theology), Dr. John Nickerson (ophthalmology), Dr. Allen Tullos (open access journal editor and author), Dr. Gonzalo Vazquez Prokopec (environmental studies) and Kim Powell, life sciences informationist with the Woodruff Health Sciences Center Library (moderator).

Monday, Oct. 21, 3-4 pm
Room 312, Woodruff Library Level 3
SPARC/World Bank OA Week Kickoff Webcast: “Open Access: Redefining Impact”

SPARC’s kickoff event will feature a webcast of a 60-minute panel discussion on “Open Access: Redefining Impact.” Panelists, representing a diverse set of stakeholders, will examine the potential positive impacts that can result when research results are shared freely in the digital environment.


 • Heather Joseph, SPARC executive director (moderator)

 • Dr. Stefano Bertuzzi, executive director of the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB)

 • Brett Bobley, chief information officer for the National Endowment for the Humanities

 • Dr. Kathleen Fitzpatrick, director of scholarly communications of the Modern Language Association

 • Dr. Michael Stebbins, assistant director for biotechnology in the science division of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP)

 • Dr. Cameron Neylon, advocacy director for Public Library of Science (PLoS)

Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2-3:30 pm
Room 314, Woodruff Library Level 3
ASERL’s Open Access Week Chat with Peter Suber, director of the Harvard Office of Scholarly Communications

Join us for a live, interactive webcast of an interview and discussion with Peter Suber moderated by Christine Fruin, ASERL’s visiting program officer for Scholarly Communications.

Friday, Oct. 25, 3-4 pm
Seminar Room (Room 162), Emory Center for Ethics, 1531 Dickey Dr. on the Emory campus
Georgia Tech Faculty Panel Webcast: Open Access and the Digital Humanities

A webcast of a panel moderated by Dr. Stewart Varner and Dr. Brian Croxall of Emory’s Center for Digital Scholarship. Panelists including Georgia Tech’s Dr. Ian Bogost, Dr. TyAnna Herrington, and Dr. Robin Wharton will discuss some of the unique benefits and challenges of open access in the humanities. Read more here. Light refreshments will be provided.

Friday, Oct. 25, 3:30-5 pm
Room 201, Goizueta Business School, 1300 Clifton Rd. on the Emory campus
Emory Graduate Student Panel on Open Access

A panel of Emory graduate students will address the practical considerations of publishing in open access while in graduate school. The discussion will cover the benefits of retaining copyright early in your career, resources and opportunities available to Emory students in support of OA publishing, and the challenges and benefits of publishing in OA as a student. Panelists: Jesse Karlsberg, Sarah Melton, Laura Platinga and Josh Shak; moderated by Stephanie Greeson and Jordan Stewart-Rozema.

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