Library Services for the publication of OA journals. The Igitur experience in the Netherlands
- Why a library is engaged in publishing? As a consequence of developments in information technology, the traditional information chain is subject to change: the separate functions in this chain become more and more integrated and the roles played by the traditional parties are most uncertain. New models in scholarly publishing are emerging, in which the scientific community itself plays a central role. It is more than natural for the university libraries, whose main function is to provide access to scientific information, to support these developments. In 2003 e-publishing was assigned as a structural task of the Utrecht University Library: the unit Igitur was launched. With Igitur, Utrecht was one of the first academic institutions in Europe to give electronic publishing a structural place within the library organization. The primary goal of Igitur is to increase access to scientific information. Igitur has two main functions: to develop the Utrecht digital repository which is financed out of the library´s budget; and to support scholars in their e-publishing endeavours. The e-publishing infrastructure is financed out of the library´s budget, but the marginal costs for services must be recovered. At the moment Igitur is publishing 10 e-journals (8 of them fully open access), e-books and supports a number of publication websites (www.uu.nl/igitur). Igitur wants to continue to expand, so professionalization is necessary. To stay up to speed with international technical developments, Igitur cooperates with the Public Knowlegde Project (Open Journal Systems). Igitur strives to more businesslike relationships with its clients by entering into service level agreements. Furthermore Igitur aims at building an active publishing community around the journals. By continuing to develop in this way, Igitur intends to contribute to the overall goal of improving access to scientific information.