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Association of Research Libraries (ARL®)

  Advancing Scholarly Communication Contact:
Julia Blixrud
FAIR (Freely Accessible Institute Resources)
Developing a Scholarly Communication Program

Establish Structure

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While it is tempting to leap right into what seems to be appropriate action, it is important to first step back and consider what the library’s goals are for improving the scholarly communication system, how they sync with campus administration’s goals, who in the library and on campus are best positioned to assist, and what principles should guide this work. Effort up-front to integrate scholarly communication into the core work of the library and achieve broad-based buy-in will pay dividends later.

As you begin your staff engagement program, things will go more smoothly if you take the time to develop a systematic structure for the program. Here are some steps to walk you through the organizing process.

  • Define broad goals for the library' scholarly communication initiative. To clearly communicate the library priority, incorporate these goals into library/division/department strategic plans.

    Example: UMN Academic Program Goals [DOC] [PDF]
    Example: UCSF
    Example: UC Libraries Systemwide Priorities [PDF]

  • Charge a team

  • Integrate scholarly communication work as standard part of library liaisons' roles and revise position descriptions accordingly (decentralized approach).

    Example: Generic Template [DOC] [PDF]
    Example: UM Schol Comm Position Description [DOC] [PDF]

  • Consider devoting all or part of a librarian position to the scholarly communication area (centralized approach).

    Example: Generic Template [DOC] [PDF]
    Example: ARL Schol Comm Position Description collection

  • Consistently enforce expectations and recognize achievement.