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PERCEPTION OF LIBRARY PROFESSIONALS IN KERALA TOWARDS OPEN ACCESS PUBLICATIONS: A GENDER WISE STUDY.

1. Introduction

Academic communities are facing problems in accessing scholarly literature, Open Access open the way to accessing, sharing and re-using the outputs of scholarly research. Open Access (OA) movement was started in the past decades within the universities to overcome the increasing cost of commercially published scholarly journals and an alternative to get over the content restrictions using intellectual property laws and regulations. OA initiative provides information to the reader without of financial, legal, or technical barriers, which has democratized the knowledge to all.

OA need a framework and proper policy in India to develop in future. In the new Open Access environment libraries has to face new opportunities and challenges. LIS Professionals can play a vital role in the implementation of Open Access in their institutions. The costs for journal subscriptions continue to rise. In the past 30 years, the cost for subscribing to a journal has outpaced inflation by 250% ("Who Benefits from Open Access?", 2018). Due to the shrinking budget libraries cannot afford the costly journals and databases, the OA give the way to overcome this barrier by selecting Open Access Journals and Books in the libraries. Librarians can develop and use Institutional repositories, Digital libraries and start Open Access journals using different Open Access Journal platforms. The librarians need to reconfigure their working culture with the new changes, by training new skills in the electronic and digital environment. This paper discuss about the perception of Library professional towards Open Access and its impact on Open Access publication and dissemination.

2. Open Access Initiatives

There are many definitions on Open Access; the three most commonly used are Budapest, Bethesda and Berlin. All these definitions are giving importance to 3 major characteristics- Free, digital form and reusable.

Definition given by Budapest Open Access Initiative "Open access to the literature, means its free availability on the public internet, permitting any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles, crawl them for indexing, pass them as data to software, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without financial, legal, or technical barriers. The only constraint is on reproduction and distribution, and the only role for copyright in this domain, should be to give authors control over the integrity of their work and the right to be properly acknowledged and cited" ("Budapest Open Access Initiative", n.d).

Open Access Journals and Open Access Archives considered as the main carrier of information in Open Access (Hirwade, 2006). Open Access journals helps to publish the peer reviewed scholarly articles in free of cost, author need to pay the article processing fee for publishing to get free access. Public can access the content free of cost can download, print, redistribute without any restrictions. Institutions, funding agencies and other institution also can bear the article processing fee by providing sponsorship or grants to publishing the content for public. Open Archiving is another method, here authors can archive their pre or post published articles in their own websites, open disciplinary archives, and institutional repositories or archives. The articles available in these types of archives not under strict peer review. Open Access publishing increases the prestige of the authors; they are getting more citations because of more access to their articles. Open Access journals are also following the peer review and remove the barrier of price and maintaining quality (Suber, 2002).

There has been a great increase in OA consciousness in the past year, with many Declarations and Statements in support of OA worldwide (Harnard, 2008). The Open Access publications challenges traditional journal subscriptions of the library and the result is very transformative. The costs of subscriptions will be moved from readers and libraries to authors or be covered by universities, foundations, or other government funders. This article told that the achievements of librarians are more in drive down costs of the library. Librarians should explore their expertise in research practices and access function to give most support to their users by utilizing newer technologies in publishing and dissemination (Eng, 2017).

3. Indian Scenario: India is still lacking a national Open Access policy, but the Institutions like Indian Academy of Science, National Institutes such as IITs, IISc, Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), Indian National Science Academy, The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), M.S Swaminathan Research Foundation, The Department of Science & Technology (DST), National Knowledge commission, Department of Biotechnology (DBT), The University Grants Commission (UGC) etc are promoting Open Access in India. Many of the academic institutions have their own Open Access policy and established their own repositories.

The main obstacle is academicians are not familiar with Open Access publications. They are always searching the Google to find out the documents related for their needs. Some are using the subscribed Journals and databases available in the libraries. The Google is always giving the tip of an iceberg, the rest of the documents are available in the deep. Most of the cases the libraries may not have the subscription to costly journals and databases. If the documents are available in Open Access everyone can access it without any barrier (permission and price barrier). Another problem is, repositories and the archives are not listed in the ROAR (Registry of Open Access Repositories) and OpenDOAR, getting access to these are very difficult. According to Scimago Journal & Country Rank (SJR), India ranks 9th in the year 2016 produced about 13 lakhs articles. However, 82% of them are not Open Access and the Institutional Repositories in India are sparsely populated in spite of having Open Access mandates in place. The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) lists only 200 out of the 20,000+ journals being published from India ("Delhi Declaration on Open Access", 2018).

In Kerala, Government giving support to institutions to switch over to Open Source mode. Higher secondary Schools are using Open Source software in teaching different subject by the help of IT@school. Most of the universities have their own repositories and using the Open Source software like Dspace, Greenstone etc.. Universities are also depositing Ph.D theses to INFLIBNET shodhganga (http://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/). Academic institutions are also maintaining their own institutional repositories, and this also not listed in ROAR (http://roar.eprints.org/) and OpenDOAR (http://v2.sherpa.ac.uk/opendoar/).

4. Need of the study

Libraries in the developing countries are facing problems in the changing scenario of information. Major problem is the budget crisis for subscribing databases or Journals for their users. The licensing problems in perpetual access / archival rights are another issue. The positive attitude and awareness of the Librarians are very essential to find out alternate sources for their users. The promotion of Open Access is inevitable and it should start from the library itself. The present study will help to identify the perception of the library professionals towards Open Access, the impact of OA in the publication of OA journals and the impact of Open Access in the dissemination of knowledge.

5. Objectives of the study

The study aims to find out the perception of library professionals in Kerala towards Open Access publications. If the Open Access policy is implemented, gender wise perception of following factors were studied

* Open Access save library budget by reducing the subscription of costly journals / databases

* disseminate scholarly materials faster than conventional sources

* Improved accessibility of documents

* Impact factor of journals

6. Methodology

The Methodology used to collect the data is structured questionnaire and conducted an online survey. The population selected for the present study consists of Library professionals in Kerala. The questionnaire was sent to population through a WhatsApp groups "LIS Talk" created for Librarian Community in Kerala (Now switched over to Telegram App). 120 members were selected in which 60 males and 60 females included. 94 filled questionnaire where received.

7. Result and Discussion

Each question in the questionnaire is arranged from Agree, Neutral, Disagree. From the total of 256 members of the WhatsApp group 120 members were selected ie. 60 males and 60 females. Only 94 filled questionnaires were received. Statistical techniques like percentage analysis is used for the analysing the data. The lowest and highest scores possible from the 3-point scale are 1 and 3 respectively

From the Table. 1 it is revealed that 56.38% of Library Professional were males and only 43.62 were females. From the 94 respondents, the participation of female professionals were lower than their male counterparts.

From the Table. 2 it is analysed that 41.49% of females "Agree" that Open Access helps to save the money spending capacity of the libraries. At the same time 47.87% of males "Agree" with the same question. Together 89.36% "Agree" that the impact of Open Access in the library helps to save the budget from spending more money in subscribing costly Journals/Databases.

From the Table 3. it is analysed that 41.49% of the females "Agree" that Open Access resources helps to disseminate the scholarly materials faster than conventional sources. 53.19% of males also "Agree' that faster dissemination is happening in library if Open Access is implemented. Males and Females together 94.68% "Agree" the impact of Open Access.

Table 4. shows 41.49% females "Agree" that accessibility of the documents are improves by the introduction of Open Access 53.19% Males also "Agree" the same factor. Together it comes 94.68%. Only 1.06% "Disagree" with the statement.

Table 5. Shows 27.66% of females "Agree" that impact factor of journals are increased in Open Access and 34.04% of Males also "Agree" the same. Together 61.70% "Agree" the increase of impact factor of Journals.

7. Conclusion

Academic publications are still restricted from download by the publishers. The sci-hub (http://scihub. tw/) like websites is promoting the direct download of academic papers and articles from the educational institutional proxies by bypassing the publisher's restrictions. If the open access journals are established legally under any of the license available, the users will get the peer reviewed, standard journal articles for their purpose. The librarians have a major role in promoting the new technologies in the publication and dissemination of information. In this study library professional reveals their opinion on Open Access. 89.36% "Agree" that, if the Open Access is implemented library can save the budget. 94.68% "Agree" that, faster dissemination of the documents are happening and 94.68% "Agree" the accessibility of the documents are very fast comparing to traditional sources. 61.70% "Agree" that impact factor of the journals are also increased. If the OA is implemented the authors will get more popularity by publishing their articles in journals with more impact factor. Study made a conclusion that, positive results agreed the impact of Open Access in the publication and dissemination of scholarly articles.

References

Budapest Open Access Initiative, FAQ. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://legacy.earlham.edu/~peters/fos/boaifaq.htm.

Delhi Declaration on Open Access. (2018). Retrieved from http://openaccessindia.org/2018/02/ Eng, Sidney. (2017). The Library Profession in the Time of Open Access. The Serials Librarian, 73(3-4), 215-225. https://doi.org/10.1080/0361526X.2017.1369921

Harnad, Stevan., Brody, T., Vallieres, F., Carr, L., Hitchcock, S., Gingras, Y., Oppenheim, Charles., Hajjem, Chawki & Hilf, Eberhard. (2008). The access/impact problem and the green and gold roads to open access: An update. Serials Review, 34, 36-40. https://doi.org/10.1080/00987913.2008.10765150.

Hirwade, Mangala., & D, Rajyalakshmi. (2006). Open Access: India is moving towards Third world Superpower. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/28805014

Suber, P. (2002). Open access to the scientific journal literature. Journal of Biology, 1-3. Retrieved from http://jbiol.com/content/1/1/3

Who Benefits from Open Access?. (2018, May 21). Retrieved from https://www.enago.com/academy/benefits-open-access/

Prajeesh Bhaskaran

Research Scholar

School of Social Sciences

Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam, Kerala

Email: prajeeshb77@gmail.com

Dr. Dineshan Koovakkai

Research Guide

School of Social Sciences

Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam, Kerala

Email: dineshank@gmail.com
Table-1: Gender wise distribution of participants

Variable    Factors   N      %

Gender      Male      53   56.38
            Female    41   43.62
            Total     94    100

Table-2: Gender wise analysis on Money Saving

Gender        Agree   Neutral   Disagree   Total

Female
Frequency      39        1         1         41
Percentage    41.49    1.06       1.06     43.62
Male
Frequency      45        4         4         53
Percentage    47.87    4.26       4.26     56.38
Total
Frequency      84        5         5         94
Percentage    89.36    5.32       5.32     100.00

Table-3: Gender wise analysis on Faster Dissemination

Gender        Agree   Neutral   Disagree   Total

Female
Frequency      39        2         0         41
Percentage    41.49    2.13       0.00     43.62
Male
Frequency      50        1         2         53
Percentage    53.19    1.06       2.13     56.38
Total
Frequency      89        3         2         94
Percentage    94.68    3.19       2.13     100.00

Table-4: Gender wise analysis on Accessibility

Gender        Agree   Neutral   Disagree   Total

Female
Frequency      39        1         1         41
Percentage    41.49    1.06       1.06     43.62
Male
Frequency      50        3         0         53
Percentage    53.19    3.19       0.00     56.38
Total
Frequency      89        4         1         94
Percentage    94.68    4.26       1.06     100.00

Table-5: Gender wise analysis on Impact Factor

Gender        Agree   Neutral   Disagree   Total

Female
Frequency      26       10         5         41
Percentage    27.66    10.64      5.32     43.62
Male
Frequency      32       15         6         53
Percentage    34.04    15.96      6.38     56.38
Total
Frequency      58       25         11        94
Percentage    61.70    26.60     11.70     100.00

Figure-1: Gender wise analysis on Budget Saving

              Agree   Neutral   Disagree

Female
Percentage     41.49    1.06       1.06
Male
Percentage     47.87    4.26       4.26

Note: Table made from bar graph.

Figure-2: Gender wise analysis on Faster Dissemination

              Agree   Neutral   Disagree

Female
Percentage     41.49    2.13       0.00
Male
Percentage     53.19    1.06       2.13

Note: Table made from bar graph.

Figure-3: Gender wise analysis on Accessibility

               Agree   Neutral   Disagree

Female
Percentage     41.49    1.06       1.06
Male
Percentage     53.19    3.19       0.00

Note: Table made from bar graph.

Figure-4: Gender wise analysis on Impact Factor

               Agree   Neutral   Disagree

Female
Percentage     27.66    10.64      5.32
Male
Percentage     34.04    15.96      6.38

Note: Table made from bar graph.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:India
Author:Bhaskaran, Prajeesh; Koovakkai, Dineshan
Publication:Library Philosophy and Practice
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Mar 1, 2019
Words:2369
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