{{ site.title }}

ARL Positions on Open Access Principles and Practices

A new openness in scholarly and research environments is transforming how knowledge is created, shared, and sustained. Open practices accelerate the dissemination of scholars’ work and improve its quality, impact, and reach. Aligning library strategy, staffing, and spending to advance the principles and practices of open scholarship in partnership with research and learning communities is an ARL priority.

The ARL Board of Directors in 2009 voted to strongly encourage ARL member libraries to refrain from signing agreements with publishers or vendors, either individually or through consortia, that include nondisclosure or confidentiality clauses.

The Association is a signatory to the following collective statements in open access and open scholarship:

COAR/SPARC Good Practice Principles for Scholarly Communication Services (2019)

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL), through its mission to catalyze the collective efforts of research libraries to enable knowledge creation and to achieve enduring and barrier-free access to information, supports “Good Practice Principles for Scholarly Communication Services” (COAR-SPARC, 2019). The landscape of tools and infrastructure to support the research enterprise reflects a complex mix of economic models, both commercial and community-owned, both proprietary and open source. With the growing enthusiasm and support in Canadian and US research libraries for academy-owned, community-governed open scholarly communication, these seven principles serve as excellent guideposts for the community as it builds and coordinates components and services for open scholarship.

Invest in Open Infrastructure (2019)

Many ARL member libraries are involved in or leading initiatives to invest their human and financial resources in collective projects to improve the openness and interoperability of scholarly infrastructure. ARL is signing on as a supporter of Invest in Open Infrastructure, one such initiative with broad interest and participation that is committed to open infrastructure and sustainability planning. ARL is pleased to see Invest in Open Infrastructure forming and building relationships with other groups, spending time to understand the current landscape, addressing gaps, and finding opportunities for collaborative action. Invest in Open Infrastructure is part of a larger movement toward collective investment in openness and interoperability that ARL will continue to monitor and support as it develops.

Transparency and Openness Promotion (TOP) Guidelines (2015)

Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities (2003)

Budapest Open Access Initiative (2002)

ARL Board Affirms Transparency as Core Operating Principle of Licensing

August 23, 2021 | At its summer meeting, the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Board of Directors approved the following statement, reiterating a long-standing licensing best practice of declining to sign nondisclosure agreements (NDAs) with publishers.


, , , , , ,