Webinar – Research libraries in an Open Access world

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As well as the recording above, please find the panelists’ slides and responses to attendee questions below.

Date: Thursday 14 December 2023

Time: 1 – 2.15 pm  UK / UTC

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OASPA is pleased to announce our next webinar which will focus on research libraries in an Open Access world.

For the past decade or so, research libraries worldwide have advertised job openings for Open Access Librarians, Open Scholarship Librarians or Open Educational Resources Librarians to be appointed in newly established organisational units such as Offices of Scholarly Communication, Open Research Teams or Digital Scholarship Services. Job listings such as these illustrate an acknowledgment that libraries need to engage with evolutions in scholarly communication if they wish to stay relevant in the context of teaching, learning and research. At the same time, the creation of these positions and units strengthens the impression that these are new tasks for libraries, distinct from their traditional roles in scholarly communication and therefore best organised separately. Though this might have been an efficient approach when there was a pressing need to develop new skills and expertise at a high pace, we may wonder how meaningful this still is in a context where a very significant percentage of new scholarly articles are now published OA, and OA books are slowly but surely becoming mainstream.

Are our libraries prepared for this OA world or have we been lulled into a false sense of preparedness by creating these small teams in the margin without making substantial changes to the majority of our legacy processes such as acquisition and cataloguing?

Have libraries changed sufficiently at their core to continue playing a central role in scholarly communication in a context which is not only digital but also OA? Is developing publishing programs within the library the only answer to that question and does this affect other areas of the library in a significant way? Or should libraries focus completely on a future as student-oriented learning centres and leave research support to others?

This webinar will be chaired by Demmy Verbeke. We welcome our panelists Joanna Ball, Rachael Samberg, Anna Clements and Lai Ma.

Following an introduction from the Chair, the panellists will each speak and then we will open up to questions from the audience and discussion.

Please join us live for this free webinar and contribute to the discussion.

Link to registration page: https://bit.ly/oaspa-webinar-registration-december

Please share with all those you think may be interested.

Please note that views expressed in OASPA webinars are those of the individual speakers and do not represent the view of OASPA

Webinar resources

Panelist Presentations:  Joanna Ball, Lai Ma, Rachael Samberg, Anna Clements.

Responses to attendee questions



Demmy Verbeke – Head of KU Leuven Libraries Artes

Demmy Verbeke is responsible for library services and collections for the Arts and Humanities. As a member of the management team with primary responsibilities for Open Science and Collections, he also contributes to the strategic development and operational management of KU Leuven Libraries as a whole. He combines this position in the library with an appointment as associate professor of open scholarship at the Faculty of Arts of KU Leuven. His research and teaching focus on (the role of libraries in) scholarly communication and digital scholarship in the humanities.


Joanna Ball  @joanna_ball, DOAJ

Joanna Ball is Managing Director for DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals), a community-led open infrastructure that indexes and provides access to quality, open access, peer-reviewed journals. Twitter 

Before joining DOAJ in 2022, her career was based in academic libraries in the UK and Denmark, most recently as Head of Roskilde University Library, part of the Royal Danish Library. As part of roles at the University of Sussex Library and at the Royal Danish Library, Joanna has led the development of Open Research services, including establishing funds to support open infrastructure and initiatives. She is the current Chair of UKSG, a cross-sector charitable organisation which brings together the information community.

Anna Clements, University of Sheffield

Anna is Director of Library Services and University Librarian at the University of Sheffield in the UK. She has more than 20 years’ experience working in information technology, digital transformation and senior library roles in higher education. Anna is a member of the LIBER Executive Board and has a particular interest in the leadership role of academic libraries in the transformation of research and education culture through all facets of open scholarship.

Prior to joining the University of Sheffield, Anna held positions at the University of St Andrews, and worked in the private sector, developing software and providing consultancy services.

Lai Ma, University College Dublin

Lai Ma is Assistant Professor at the School of Information and Communication Studies at University College Dublin. She recently published The Scholarly Communication Handbook: From Research Dissemination to Societal Impact (Facet) and a few articles about research metrics, open access, and the platformisation of information.

Rachael G Samberg, University of California Berkeley

Rachael G. Samberg, is an attorney and the program director of UC Berkeley’s Office of Scholarly Communication Services. A Duke Law graduate, Rachael practiced intellectual property litigation at Fenwick & West LLP for seven years before spending six years at Stanford Law School’s library, where she was Head of Reference & Instructional Services and a Lecturer in Law. Rachael speaks throughout the country about scholarly communication, copyright, licensing, privacy, and ethics. She has been project director for multiple NEH-funded grants to develop and teach scholars legal literacies for text and data mining in U.S. and cross-border research contexts, and is widely published on these matters. Currently, she is supporting regulatory analysis of Digital Millennium Copyright Act exemptions to break digital rights management within text and data mining research.

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