Open access and open research data in China
EIFL guest blogger Dr Ku Liping shares highlights from the growing open access and open data movement in China

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Our guest blogger, Dr Ku Liping of the National Science Library, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences.

In 2014, the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) issued open access policies to make their research openly available. These policies are producing results, and open access and open data are steadily growing in China.

Open access to publications

In May 2015, the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NFSC) launched an open access (OA) repository to support implementation of the NFSC policy statement on open access to research publications of its funded projects.

Today, less than a year after its launch, the Open Repository of the NSFC includes 135,000 research articles published between 1998 and 2015 by 274,634 authors from 1,305 institutions. These research papers have already been downloaded over 669,001 times.

The Chinese Academy of Sciences now has two OA portals, namely the Institutional Repository Grid of Chinese Academy of Sciences, with content from 102 repositories, and the China Open Access Journal Portal with content from hundreds of journals.

At a third institution, the National Science and Technology Report Service, there have been significant OA developments, with the creation of an OA digital collection that is growing rapidly.

OA and open research data awareness-raising, advocacy, support and training

Data librarianship, involving a variety of skills related to management of research data, is an emerging skill in China. In March 2015 the National Science Library, Chinese Academy of Sciences hosted the Second Institutional Repository and Data Management Workshop, providing training to 56 librarians from special libraries.

To increase awareness about open access, the National Science Library, Chinese Academy of Sciences also hosted the Third Chinese Institutional Repository Conference in Shanghai in September 2015, which attracted 265 participants.

Open Access Week, the annual global event that aims to make OA the norm in scholarship and research, is gaining in popularity in China. Over 400 delegates attended the Fourth China Open Access Week conference in October 2015 in Beijing.

We are looking forward to some exciting OA awareness-raising, advocacy and training events in 2016 - 

  • The third Chinese Data Librarian Seminar (24 - 25 March), that will cover DSpace repository software, R, Hadoop, Data Management Plans, data publishing, research data policies, librarians and Big data and Cloud computing;

  • The first China Fair Use Week (20 - 21 May) where copyright, licences and open content licenses (for example, Creative Commons) will be discussed, as well as research data and copyright issues;

  • The Fourth Chinese Institutional Repository Conference (21 - 23 September), that will focus on research data management and new repository technologies; and

  • The fifth China Open Access Week (24 - 25 October) that will cover open repositories, open access publishing, open content and open data.

Open research data policy developments

At the National Science Library, Chinese Academy of Sciences we are currently discussing open research data policy that will support creation of new services in the areas of data science and big data.

Dr Ku Liping is Deputy Executive Director of the Information Policy Centre at the National Science Library, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (UCAS). Among the courses he teaches is one titled ‘Information Service and User Study’, which includes Python and R (free and open source software programming languages and software environments for statistical computing and graphics), data science and information-seeking behavior theory.

The National Science Library, Chinese Academy of Sciences is EIFL’s partner in China.