Open access in Ethiopia

EIFL helps launch a national open access policy and publishing platform 

You are here

NEXT PROJECT
Photo of Aklilu Dessalegn (Managing Editor, The Ethiopian Journal of Business and Economics, EJOL) and Solomon Mekonnen (EJOL, AAUL and EIFL-OA country coordinator).
Open Access publishing champions: Aklilu Dessalegn (Managing Editor, The Ethiopian Journal of Business and Economics, EJOL) and Solomon Mekonnen Tekle (EJOL, AAUL and EIFL-OA country coordinator).

OVERVIEW

Addis Ababa University Libraries (AAUL) has been leading open access work in Ethiopia. In 2007, AAUL launched an institutional open access repository for theses and dissertations, to increase availability, visibility and access to research by students at Addis Ababa University (AAU).
 
To raise awareness about open access in Ethiopia, EIFL partnered with the Consortium of Ethiopian Academic and Research Libraries (CEARL) and AAU. In 2013, we began supporting creation of an open access publishing platform, Ethiopian Journals Online, and advocacy for the establishment of open access repositories and the introduction of open access policies in universities and research organizations.
 
Our joint efforts resulted in the adoption, in June 2019, of a national open access policy. At the same time, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education launched a national repository and journals project, coordinated by AAU.

MAIN ACTIVITIES

  • Hosting a series of meetings, workshops and training for researchers and students, research administrators and policy makers, as well as university presses and society publishers, to raise awareness about open access and open research data, and to improve awareness about open access publishing and the Open Journal Systems (OJS) publishing and journal management software.
  • Installing OJS and training journal editors to use it.
  • Organizing a workshop for AAU at which participants drafted an institutional open access policy, which was shared with other universities, and the Ministry of Science and Higher Education, as a model.
  • Drafting, discussing and implementing a national open access policy.

TIMELINE

June 2013 - ongoing.

ACHIEVEMENTS

  • An open access publishing platform has been set up: Ethiopian Journals Online (EJOL) publishes open access journals using OJS. EJOL currently (in 2020) hosts 27 open access journals. 
  • Awareness about open access and skills in open access publishing have been improved: Over 150 journal editors and publishers, researchers and students, research administrators and policy makers attended workshops and other events on open access publishing.
  • Support for journal editors and publishers was established: EJOL helps publishers set up journals; provides training for editorial staff; guarantees journals are backed up, provides technical support and maintenance, and provides guidance on copyright management. 
  • A model open access policy was developed: A model  policy is being used for development of institutional policies by universities. 
  • Three universities adopted open access policies: Jimma University, Arba Minch University and Hawassa University have adopted open access policies.
  • The Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Ethiopia (MOSHE) adopted a national open access policy (2019): The policy mandates open access to all published articles, theses, dissertations and data resulting from publicly-funded research conducted by staff and students at universities that are run by the Ministry - that is over 47 universities located across Ethiopia. Read the blog by Dr Solomon Mekonnen Tekle, librarian at Addis Ababa University Library, and EIFL Open Access Coordinator in Ethiopia, celebrating the adoption of the policy, and including further details.
  • National Digital Repository of Ethiopia (NADRE) was launched:  By 2020, 12 universities had set up repositories at the national platform, arranged by EthERNet (the Ethiopian Education and Research Network).
  • The Ministry of Science and Higher Education launched a national repository and journals project in August 2019, coordinated by AAU: The project aims to ensure that all public universities establish institutional repositories. It also strengthens the EJOL open access journals platform and supports researchers in making their research available through the EthERNet platform for research data, and through NADRE.
Adoption of open access policies will transform the academic landscape in Ethiopia!
Solomon Mekonnen Tekle, librarian, Addis Ababa University