Open Access Week 2020

Memorial University Libraries is celebrating International Open Access (OA) Week 2020. This year’s theme is ‘Open with Purpose: Taking Action to Build Structural Equity and Inclusion’ and runs from October 19-25.  

“This year's theme focuses on inclusivity and equity as essential features of Open Access and the importance of implementing structural changes to the current scholarly publishing landscape,” said Dr. Patrick Gamsby, Memorial University Libraries’ scholarly communications librarian. “This is a global call for practical change to how scholarly communications functions as a whole, with a specific focus on shining a light on how certain business models exclude various groups and individuals.”

In traditional academic publishing, copyrights are signed over to commercial publishers who then charge readers to access the content. A great deal of research material on the web is locked behind paywalls. By its sheer accessibility, Open Access publishing can be a powerful tool for building more equitable systems of sharing knowledge.

Canada’s Tri-Council funding agencies -- the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) -- are the main source of research funding for Canadian universities and all have made open access a publishing requirement for funded research.

Memorial University Libraries has created a number of initiatives to enhance the visibility, retrievability, and impact of faculty and graduate student research. The Libraries have established an Open Access Author’s Fund to pay author’s fees when scholarly papers are accepted in open access journals. The Memorial University Research Repository is a place to openly share articles, presentations, performances and reports. The Library’s open journal hosting platform currently hosts 14 open access journals managed by Memorial faculty, students and regional associations.

The Centre for Innovation in Teaching and Learning (CITL) has an open learning object repository, which provides instructors with free access to thousands of digital learning objects to be used or repurposed for teaching and learning. Users of the repository can search for and create collections of objects, as well as share objects they create with the wider community. Digital rights are acknowledged through the use of Creative Commons licensing in a self-serve model.

Memorial's Harris Centre maintains the search engine Yaffle to help connect Newfoundland and Labrador communities with relevant university research.

To find out more about open access at Memorial, contact Dr. Patrick Gamsby (, or visit here.

There is also a workshop taking place that is open to the public:

  • Date: October 22nd at 1pm.
  • Mode: Online
  • Topic: Open Access and Scholarly Publishing
    This workshop will focus on the often misunderstood topic of Open Access and the place it occupies in the scholarly publishing landscape. Such topics as author rights, peer review, and publishing economics, among others, will be covered. A special emphasis will be placed on the relevant services currently being offered by MUN Libraries.

For more information about International Open Access Week, please visit The official twitter hashtag for the week is #OAWeek.