Institutional repository as the basis of the promotion and implementation of open access principles

This case study contains key achievements, strategies, tactics and tools, success stories and lessons learnt from the EIFL-funded national open access advocacy project in Estonia

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Case Study
Sipria-Mironov, Elena; Burenkov, Merit
February 2012

In 2011-2013 EIFL provided financial support to 34 projects that implemented national and institutional open access (OA) advocacy campaigns to reach out to research communities and OA publishing initiatives.

Through small grants and support from their own institutions, the projects engaged in a wide variety of campaigns and activities, including: holding workshops, creating websites, building institutional OA repositories, creating e-learning courses, and implementing OA publishing platforms.

The case studies resulting from the projects reveal impressive first-time achievements and will help increase the availability of research literature in developing and transition countries.

Learn more about the key achievements for this national OA campaign in Estonia below. You can access the full case study (strategies, tactics and tools, success stories and lessons learnt) by clicking on the download button.

About the project in Estonia

Estonia does not have a national-level official position on OA for research publications. Interest has been expressed at the national level, but it is still up to individual institutions to decide about OA implementations. We lack a national policy on making state-funded research results and data publicly available. There is also a lack of understanding of OA principles among researchers and students. Several institutions in Estonia have OA institutional repositories but OA publishing is less common. Therefore, the awareness of the benefits of OA is best disseminated through a national OA advocacy campaign.

One of the goals of the 2011 project “Institutional repository as the basis of the promotion and implementation of OA principles” was to promote the use of the OA digital repository DSpace at University of Tartu (UT) among researchers and students at UT’s faculties and colleges. The second goal was to initiate an in-depth discussion on the national level between different stakeholders and to achieve a common understanding how to advance OA in Estonia.

Key Achievements

  • A series of promotional activities were held during OA Week 2011, resulting in increased usage of OA textbooks and learning objects in the University of Tartu (UT)’s institutional repository and of UT’s OA web site portal. During the period of January - December 2011, the University of Tartu Library (UTL) Open Access gate had more than 30,000 visits (20,500 unique page-views). And during OA Week visits increased 23%.
  • Created a general print brochure on OA that was sent to all libraries and UT colleges and a video promoting their IR.
  • The UTL is now taking part in the Estonia Ministry of Education and Research for monitoring Estonian research policies and is involved in national OA policy discussions.
  • The UTL has become a centre of learning and knowledge sharing for other institutions seeking advice in the field of OA.