At OpenCon 2014 I had the chance to talk to many brilliant researchers about issues surrounding access to articles, data, and educational resources. Here are some clips from some of those interviews. Thanks to the Canadian Association of Research Libraries for making this video possible, and thanks to everyone who took the time to talk with me, and sorry for the wait!
I’ve written morethanonce about the fact that most research isn’t accessible to the majority of people on Earth. It sucks. About 80% of research is funded by the public, and only about 20% is accessible.
Well, last weekend I was able to go and learn a whole lot more about this whole ‘Open’ business/approach/revolution/whatever-you-want-to-call-it. Thanks to support from CARL, I was able to attend OpenCon 2014 in Washington DC, a conference on Open Access, Open Data, and Open Educational Resources. I shot a lot of footage while I was there, so I intend to make those categories clear with a video link as soon as I’ve edited that.
In the meantime, you can take a look at my notes – which I’ve posted as a google doc – and get a bit of a sense of what people were talking about. You can also search twitter for #OpenCon2014, if you have the patience to go through some thousands of excited tweets.
We were about 175 early career researchers from 40 countries, brought together to learn about and advocate for openness in academia. We had some incredible talks on the schedule, and we even spent a day meeting with staff members and elected officials of congress and advocating for change. Thanks again to everyone who made this conference happen!
Academia has a long way to go to be open, but this conference was more than a little encouraging. Things are changing fast, and the push for Open is gaining real momentum.
There were many things that set this conference apart from any other I have been to, and I think the general reason became clear to me right in the closing speeches. Mike Carroll of Creative Commons referred to the attendees as ‘OpenCon 2014 Alumni’, and at first I thought this sounded like an awkward and pretentious thing to say, but then it hit me: this conference was much more like a short-course than any other conference I’ve been to. This was certainly one of the differences that made it so particularly delectable.
When they post the videos from the conference, I’ll be sure to scoot back here and post the link, so that everyone will have access.
This time next week I’ll be on route to Washington to attend a conference about openness in academia. Tailored to early career researchers, OpenCon 2014 will bring people together from Nov 15-17th to learn and share about: Open Access, Open Data, and Open Educational Resources.
What are all of those ‘Open’ terms? Well, I’m really excited about these topics, but I’m also sometimes a bit lost in all of the terms (the miasma of seemingly superfluous jargon). These topics are changing the way that research is done and shared, and they are worth learning about. Whether you are curious but completely confused, or well-versed but looking for a refresher, the Right to Research Coalition created three great and up-to-date introductions to these topics that will help bring you up to speed (below).
Before the videos, I just want to say a big thanks to The Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) for awarding me with the travel grant that is allowing for me to go and have this awesome experience (I’m really excited!!!). In addition to the brief report I’ll write about what I learn, I’ll be shooting a short video while I’m there that will [hopefully] allow me to share my experience with others and maybe help to further clarify some of these terms, so stay tuned for that! If you don’t get to go Washington in person, you can still take part in a satellite event or the livestream!
Open Data with Ross Mounce:
Open Access with Nick Shockey:
And Open Educational Resources with Nicole Allen and David Wiley: