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Attached file: eifl_newsletter_36_november-december_2008.pdf
On November 6-8, eIFL held its 8th Annual Assembly in Sofia, Bulgaria. As it is our custom, every year an eIFL member country offers to host this major eIFL knowledge sharing event and therefore we thank New Bulgarian University and Bulgarian Information Consortium for having done so. 2008 GA will remain in our memory for many enjoyable and productive moments, but also because of 3 reasons.
First, so far it has been the eIFL General Assembly with the largest number of participants: 101 people altogether, including eIFL staff and Board members, coordinators and representatives of local library consortia from 45 member countries across Africa, South East Asia and Central Asia, the Middle East, Balkan and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, representatives of 18 scholarly publishing houses which cooperate with eIFL and invited speakers. We thank everybody for their commitment and enthusiasm with eIFL. Second, this year we introduced two experiments that have been very welcome: “speed dating” between eIFL country representatives and publishers and a one afternoon uncoference open to discuss topics proposed by the floor.
Last but not least, our General Assembly has not limited itself to updating participants on eIFL ongoing and future work agenda and on presenting new eIFL strategy plan, but has also featured some like minded initiatives that will be surely inspiring for the eIFL network: Library of Congress Memory of the World Project and British Library’s Endangered Archive Programme shared with us their efforts to support the digitisation of unique collections around the world; SciELO explained the many reasons behind the success of this leading regional initiative that gives broad visibility and open accessibility to scholarly journals produced in native Spanish and Portuguese speaking countries, and Ebrary updated the audience on the rise and growing popularity of ebooks in the publishing and academic arenas.
Presentations during the conference are available on our website at www.eifl.net. eIFL country coordinators are asked to access the MEMBERS ONLY section of our website and go to “General Assembly 2008” to see all presentations and other GA information related to eIFL internal business.
Within the framework of its General Assembly 2008, eIFL held its 18th Advisory Board in Sofia, in order to continue the ongoing discussion over the draft of the new eIFL strategy plan. The meeting also allowed time to address issues relative to all eIFL programmes and ongoing fundraising activities and analyse perspectives for potential strategic partnerships with organizations which share common objectives with eIFL.net.
This Board meeting was the last for 3 members that have shown their support to eIFL by serving on its Advisory Board for 4 years. We truly thank Johanna Sander, Executive Director of the Library and Information Centre at University of Johannesburg, Emilija Banionyte, Library Director of Vilnius Pedagogical University, and Jan Andrzej Nikisch, president of the Board of the Poznan Foundation of Scientific Libraries in Poland for their dedication. During the General Assembly 2008 eIFL ran elections to fill in these 3 vacancies and we are delighted to announce that Diana Sayej, Library Director of Birzeit University in Palestine, Kay Raseroka, Director of Library Services at the University of Botswana, and Sreten Ugricic, Director of the National Library of Serbia have been elected to serve in the eIFL Advisory Board for the next 2 years.
The Endangered Archives programme at the British library has awarded the Fundamental Scientific Library with a two year grant (August 2008 – August 2010) for preservation of the libraries endangered collections.
One of the largest collections of early printed books and periodicals in the Republic of Armenia is located in the Fundamental Scientific Library (FSL) This project will digitise the Armenian rare book collections and periodicals kept at FSL and will make them widely available on the web. At the termination of the project, FSL staff will be able to train the staff of other libraries in Armenia which house rare books or other fragile materials. FSL is a host of Armenia Library Consortium.
Greenstone free/open source software will be used as a Web solution. These unique texts, pictures and atlases are of immense value for understanding the culture, traditions, political structure and life style of the people living in Asia Minor in medieval times. For more details about the project, please check here.
On November 13, the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Lithuania held the conference Green Paper "Copyright in the knowledge economy": the Lithuanian Perspective. The conference was well attended by librarians – 40 out of 60 participants were librarians. Emilija Banionyte, President of the Lithuanian Research Library Consortium, presented the library position on the Green Paper, where exceptions and limitations for libraries, rights and services for visually impaired library users and copyright issues in a digital environment are much discussed.
Birzeit University library in Palestine, Tromsø University library and Telemark University college library in Norway have decided to work together in order to promote the development and establishment of an Open research archive for scientific publications and master and PhD theses from Birzeit university. More information about the project is here: www.eifl.net
On December 10, Biljana Kosanovic, coordinator of the Serbian Library Consortium for Coordinated Acquisition (KoBSON, nainfo.nbs.bg.ac.yu/Kobson) will present Open Access projects at the fourth international conference ”e-Society.Mk”, Skopje, Macedonia, (e-society.org.mk), organised by Metamorphosis (www.metamorphosis.org.mk). This year the conference will focus on ICT usage in education.
On November 2, Teresa Hackett organised a meeting in Geneva of the eIFL-IP Advisory Board to discuss future strategy and direction.
On November 3-4, Teresa Hackett attended an Information Session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights in Geneva, which includes a presentation of the library study on exceptions and limitations.
On November 6-8, eIFL held its 8th General Assembly. This time, New Bulgarian University and Bulgarian Information Consortium (BIC) kindly offered to host this major eIFL knowledge sharing event which gathered eIFL coordinators from 45 member countries, eIFL staff and Advisory Board members, scholarly publishers and invited speakers. The Conference was preceded by eIFL 18th Advisory Board meeting.
On November 13, eIFL OA manager Iryna Kuchma presented a paper “Gaining the Momentum: Open Repositories in Developing and Transitional Countries” at the Sofia 2008 conference: Globalization and the Management of Information Resources (slim.emporia.edu).
On November 13-14, Teresa Hackett gave a presentation on the role of European Union copyright laws in CIS countries at a joint conference eIFL/IFLA/EBLIDA conference “Copyright: Enabling Access or Creating Roadblocks for Libraries?”, organised in cooperation with Consortium eIFL Direct Moldova.
On November 15-16, Iryna Kuchma gave a series of presentations about open access, open education and open licenses (Creative Commons) at the EducampKyiv08 – educational conference about internet and new media (educamp.com.ua).
On November 17 Arnold Hirshon, CEO of NELINET and advisor to eIFL.net’s board conducted a workshop on sustainable consortium management for librarians and stakeholders in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
On November 25, Rima Kupryte will participate in the final conference of the EU TEMPUS SYReLIB project in Aleppo, Syria. A joint project by the Robert Gordon University and Middlesex University in the United Kingdom, Aleppo University and al-Baath University in Syria and eIFL.net, SYReLIB has put in place sufficient technical infrastructure to enable first -phase ILS, eResource access systems and Institutional Repositories in the two Syrian participating institutions.
On November 25, Iryna Kuchma will give a presentation “Advantages of Open Access, Quality and Progress of Research” at the Adult Learning and e-Learning Quality conference on November 25-26 in Kaunas, Lithuania. Futher information is available at qualityalliance.vdu.lt.
On November 26-28 a workshop on consortium building and negotiations and licensing will be held with members and stakeholders of the new Nepalese library consortium, by Helena Assamoah-Hassan, chairperson of the Ghana library and information consortium CARLIGH, and Ann Okerson, librarian of Yale university.
On December 2-3, eIFL.net, Scientific Library Ural State University, National Electronic Information Consortium (NEICON) and Association of the Regional Library consortiums (ARBIKON) will organise a workshop “Knowledge in the digital age: Open Access and Open repositories” at the Ural State University, Russia (lib.usu.ru)
On December 9, eIFL FOSS manager Randy Metcalfe will participate in a workshop on the open source ILS Evergreen, in Boston, USA, hosted by NELINET. Randy will provide background to the selection of Evergreen as one of two FOSS ILSs being piloted by eIFL.net libraries.
On December 22-23, eIFL.net and Consortium of Ethiopian Academic and Research Libraries (CEARL) will organise an awareness-raising workshop about Open Access at Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. Contact person, Derib Erget, e.derib[at]yahoo.com.
On October 21, eIFL.net signed an agreement with Massachusetts Medical Society for a period of three years to offer access at a deeply discounted price to NEJM. There are 52 weekly issues of the world's most influential medical journal, including the latest medical research, significant medical trials, ground breaking case studies, expert review articles, lively editorials and commentary, revealing clinical images. The agreement and licenses are available at the MEMBERS ONLY section of our website, under “Publishers”.
A new study on library exceptions and limitations, commissioned by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and prepared by Professor Kenneth Crews, Colombia University, USA, was published in October 2008. For the first time, library exceptions have been gathered from 149 countries, providing an analytical survey of the law with respect to libraries and library services.
This is a valuable new resource for librarians working with copyright matters, and for policy makers in the field. It will help identify best practices, as well as national laws that are not optimised in support of modern library services. The data will help with international discussion on minimum exceptions and limitations. The proposal to WIPO for a library study was made in 2007 by Chile, supported by eIFL. eIFL members helped Professor Crews to gather copyright laws and contributed to the case studies. Thank you to everyone who helped!
The study, available in English, French and Spanish, was presented by the author at an Information Session preceding the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights in November in Geneva.
Read the eIFL press release: www.eifl.net.
eIFL attended an exciting meeting of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights that took place in Geneva on November 3-7 2008. A major topic on the agenda was copyright exceptions and limitations. A large library delegation comprising eIFL, IFLA and the US Library Copyright Alliance produced a written statement outlining the importance of exceptions and limitations for libraries. The highlight was a proposal by the World Blind Union, supported by libraries, for a WIPO treaty for blind, visually impaired and other reading disabled persons. In hard-won conclusions, the Committee acknowledged the special needs of visually impaired persons and stressed the importance of dealing with their problems without delay. The WIPO Secretariat will prepare a draft questionnaire for Member States before the next meeting to include educational activities, libraries and archives, provisions for disabled persons, as well as implications of digital technology in the field of copyright.
We would like to welcome three new copyright librarians to the eIFL community: Toshka Borisova, American University in Bulgaria; Aliya Japarova, National Library of Uzbekistan and Tatjana Brzulovic Stanisavljevic, University Library Belgrade, Serbia. Stela Filipi-Matutinovic from Serbia, will remain involved and will support Tatjana in her new role. Tatjana is able to quickly get up to speed on the issues by attending the joint eIFL/IFLA/EBLIDA conference in November in Moldova (see section of eIFL Events in November/December 2008) - www.eifl.net
In October 2008, the European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations’ (EBLIDA) Expert Group on Information Law agreed to a proposal for cooperation between eIFL and EBLIDA on European Partnership Agreements.
IP is firmly placed at the centre of the EU’s global trade strategy in the new generation of European Union bi-lateral trade agreements. There is growing concern amongst civil society organisations about the impact of bi-lateral trade agreements on developing countries and that the new generation of European Union bi-lateral trade agreements uses the leverage of market access to remove vital IP policy space from developing countries. Recent proposals show that the EU is seeking to impose standards of protection on its trading partners that exceed current international standards. The most significant set of current negotiations is with the African, Caribbean and Pacific States (ACP), a group of seventy-six least developed, developing and small island states divided into six negotiating groups.
A joint eIFL-EBLIDA advocacy plan includes drafting position papers, working with allies, meeting with the European Commission and raising awareness of the issues amongst the European and eIFL library communities.
DRIVER and eIFL.net have identified demand for cooperation in order to progress and enhance the provision, visibility and application of European research outputs through digital repositories.
DRIVER is a joint initiative of European stakeholders, co-financed by the European Commission, to establish a flexible, robust, and scalable infrastructure for all European and world-wide digital repositories, managing scientific information in an Open Access model increasingly demanded by researchers, funding organisations and other stakeholders.
Rima Kupryte, Director of eIFL.net, said 'eIFL.net and DRIVER share the vision that research institutions should contribute actively and cooperatively to a global, interoperable, trusted and long-term data and service infrastructure based on Open Access digital repositories. This agreement includes joint approaches to consolidation of national communities for the European repository network and active joint dissemination of best practices of Open Access scholarly communication in countries and regions without such formal policy.'
Norbert Lossau, Scientific Coordinator of DRIVER and Director of the Goettingen State and University Library commented: "DRIVER can only be successful through collaborating with all relevant stakeholders and by including all countries. eIFL has an excellent track record in supporting developing countries. Cooperation with eIFL will contribute to the joint vision through an established communication network and enthusiastic pioneers in many countries."
Read the eIFL Press release: www.eifl.net
October 14 was the world’s first Open Access Day. The founding partners were SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), Students for FreeCulture, and the Public Library of Science. Open Access Day helped to broaden awareness and understanding of Open Access, including recent mandates and emerging policies, within the international higher education community and the general public (openaccessday.org).
Information about Open Access Day activities in Azerbaijan, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Mozambique, Poland, South Africa, Sudan is available at www.eifl.net
The Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association, OASPA offers a forum for bringing together the entire community of Open Access journal publishers and its mission is to represent the interests of Open Access (OA) journal publishers globally in all scientific, technical and scholarly disciplines by exchanging information, setting standards, advancing models, advocacy, education, and the promotion of innovation.
Through a shared interest in developing appropriate business models, tools and standards to support OA publishing, OASPA can ensure a prosperous and sustainable future to the benefit of the members and the scholarly communities they serve. SPARC Europe supports OASPA during its initial phase of operation. eFL.net applied for the Associate (non-voting) Membership.
OASPA welcomes OA professional publishing organizations, OA scientist/scholar publishers – individuals or small groups of scientists/scholars that publish usually a single scholarly journal in their field of study and other organizations who provide significant services and/or support for OA publishing. For further information, please go to www.oaspa.org.
The stable version of SCIndeks: the Serbian Citation Index, internally signed as 1.6., was published at the new permanent address scindeks.nb.rs. This extended version contains all papers published from 2002 onwards in more than 350 indexed national professional journals and articles from more than 130 journals are available in Open Access. More information about the project is here: www.eifl.net.
The eIFL-FOSS program received some much appreciated publicity during presentations at Access2008 as well as at the Free Software and Open Source Symposium, both events in Canada in October. The focus of attention was the eIFL-FOSS ILS Project, and this will again be the subject when Randy Metcalfe, eIFL-FOSS Program Manager, participates in a NELINET workshop in December in Boston (see section eIFL Events November/December 2008). Selecting, testing, and migrating to FOSS solutions in libraries is a hot topic in all parts of the world.
Each of the pilot sites is now in its testing phase of their chosen FOSS integrated library system (ILS). Testing against real data, especially in languages with difficult scripts such as Georgian, can throw up challenges. Fortunately, many of the pilots are also now participating on the Evergreen and Koha user email discussion lists, which is a great sign of burgeoning real engagement with these FOSS solutions. Of course that doesn't mean that bugs in the software will not surface. Rather it means that there are others there to help when they do. Alongside his team's investigations into Koha and Evergreen, Tigran Zargaryan of the Fundamental Scientific Library of the National Academy of Sciences, Armenia, is also now exploring NewGenLib (www.newgenlib.com), which was released under a FOSS licence earlier this year.
When it comes to choosing a FOSS solution, sometimes the real challenge is having so much choice. Naturally we are also watching with anticipation the development of the FOSS successor to CDS/ISIS, called ABCD. At the moment this software is still in beta-release, but when its project site gets launched, eIFL-FOSS will be exploring it in detail and promoting this eagerly awaited option.
The Support Network has been busy even during the gap between the end of the pilot project and the flourishing of the ongoing Support Network. In September, Amos Kujenga of the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) Library, Zimbabwe, and Mischeck Nyaluso of the University of Malawi conducted a 5-day training workshop in Nairobi, Kenya. Both Amos and Mischeck were participants in the pilot phase of the Southern African Greenstone project. Helping to pass on knowledge and expertise on Greenstone and digital collections to neighbouring countries is part of what makes the Southern African Greenstone Support Network so successful.
During September and October the Support Network website migrated to its new home within the eIFL-FOSS webspace here (www.eifl.net). In October, Repke de Vries joined eIFL.net part-time as Project Coordinator for the Southern African Greenstone Support Network. A part-time Regional Coordinator has also been identified and will be announced in coming weeks.
As ever, please visit the eIFL-FOSS space on the eIFL.net website for the latest news and information from the eIFL-FOSS programme: www.eifl.net