The last month has been an especially busy time for KU. Not only are we in the middle of a library pledging round, but we are also very excited to be announcing the formal establishment of a new arm of KU: KU Research. KU Research is being headed up by Lucy Montgomery, Associate Professor at Curtin University and KU's Deputy Director. The establishment of KU Research is an important step in scaling-up our research activities and ambitions, and formalising links between KU and researchers tackling big questions in scholarly communication and Open Access.
KU Research is looking forward to contributing to transparency in and understanding of digital knowledge landscapes that include Open Access. Developing and piloting business models that make Open Access publishing practical and sustainable for research communities is part of this. Thinking through the opportunities (and challenges) of collecting and managing usage data and working with libraries, publishers and research funder to develop new tools and standards for mapping the use of Open Access content at web-scale is also key.
Curtin University researcher, Alkim Ozaygen, is the latest addition to the KU research program. Ozaygen is developing new tools and methods for mapping and understanding the impact of Open Access books as part of his PhD research. KU Open Access books provide him with a key dataset: making it possible to interrogate patterns and relationships that will make more effective measurements of the impact of monographs on society and scholarly communities possible. In doing so, Ozaygen is hoping to contribute to a better understanding of pathways for the distribution of knowledge across global digital networks.
KU was pleased to be involved in the 2015 Scholarly Communications Institute, which took place in the Triangle region of North Carolina in October. This exciting event was funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and brought together teams of researchers for five intensive days of thinking, planning and doing: defining shared challenges, exploring creative strategies for tackling them, developing new collaborations and fostering a spirit of bold and open experimentation. The theme of SCI 2015 was Validating and Valuing Digital Scholarship. Lucy Montgomery was selected to take part, as part of a team working on a project titled Collecting and Analyzing Usage Data for Online Scholarly Publications. Plans are already underway to take this project further… so watch this space.