As we have approached Open Access Week 2021, with its theme of ‘Building Structural Equity’, we have been thinking about the ways in which Sherpa Services can continue to grow as a sustainable, inclusive and diverse resource for our users across the globe.
One of the key ways in which we are engaging with our international colleagues is by collaborating on projects to encourage publishers from their country to form Open Access (OA) policies and ensure they are clearly represented and accessible to researchers and support staff throughout the publication process.
Some of the benefits these collaborations bring for our services include increasing the diversity of our records (you can see a list of all of the countries currently represented in Sherpa Romeo here); and enriching our data with high quality metadata which has been provided and translated (where appropriate) by local experts.
Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL)
We have had an ongoing collaboration with the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) which was launched during Open Access Week 2020, in which we created a ‘sandbox’ environment for their team to populate and edit Sherpa Romeo records. This involved input from our technical colleagues to create a clone of the Sherpa Romeo admin interface, and also the Sherpa product team to provide training and support to our CARL colleagues to enable them to create and edit their own records accurately. The CARL team held a successful outreach campaign with Canadian publishers to gather together their Open Access policies, and created or updated 60 Canadian publisher records in the database. Following our review processes, we are very pleased to share that these will all be imported into the live Sherpa Romeo database within the next few weeks.
We are currently working with our French colleagues from the Mir@bel network, as part of their exciting project to engage with publishers to create a collection of French OA policies. For this collaboration, we are working with the Mir@bel team to support them in the creation of their database and an API link to Sherpa Romeo, allowing them to create and edit records which can then be shared to the Romeo database. This will significantly improve the coverage & visibility of French publishers and journals in our collection. The first phase of this work is expected to be completed by early next year, with further phases planned to include a French language interface.
We are also in the early stages of some new collaborations with colleagues in both Switzerland and Finland.
We are looking forward to being involved with a project taking place in Switzerland to encourage development of Green OA policies, and to increase the inclusion and coverage of these in Sherpa Romeo – more details will be announced about this soon when the project kicks off early next year.
We are also very pleased to be working with colleagues in Finland next year to increase awareness and understanding of OA policies among small publishers there, and increase the number of Finnish publishers who are represented in the Sherpa Romeo database. More information on this will also be released soon as the project will begin before the end of this year.
Sherpa Romeo and the SCOSS scheme
One of the key reasons why it is important for us to have high quality international data is that Sherpa Services are used worldwide – over 80% of our current site visits come from outside of the UK. We are therefore immensely grateful for the engagement and generous donations we receive from our international colleagues who use and value Sherpa Services.
We have been involved with The Global Sustainability Coalition for Open Science Services (SCOSS) since its launch in 2017, and we continue to receive support from colleagues across the globe via this scheme – we have recently welcomed new supporters from the USA and Europe. For more information about our supporters, and how to get involved, please see the ‘Support Us’ section of the Romeo website.
Keeping up to date with Sherpa Services
The above gives an overview of the work we are currently carrying out with our international colleagues, and of course we are continually working to ensure that our data from both the UK and elsewhere is as full, representative and accessible as possible for all of our users.
If you have any questions or comments on any of the above, please feel free to contact the Sherpa team via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can join the Sherpa Services User Group list at: www.jiscmail.ac.uk/SherpaUsers
Follow Sherpa Services and Jisc’s other open research services on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/JiscOpenRes