Skip to main content

Openness: Introduction

Why does Openness Matter?

  • Furthers the transmission of ideas and the progression of knowledge by giving everyone equitable access to knowledge
  • Increases citation counts for authors, making their scholarship more widely read & used
  • Gives the taxpayer access to research that they have funded through their tax dollars

OA Week 2015

Open Access week was October 19-23, 2015

Watch a recording of our Panel on Ethics in Information Access

At Davidson College, we have a great deal of information privilege. Our access to thousands of books and articles enables us to read and utilize information most of the world will never see. In addition, we make intentional decisions about how our own work is distributed. This session will explore why information access is not just an economic issue but also a social justice issue. Panel members will facilitate a conversation about the information sharing avenues that better allow us, the Davidson community, to create a disproportionate impact.


What is Open Access?

Open Access (OA) is literature or scholarship that is digital, free of charge, and often has less restricted copyright licenses or agreements. OA removes all price barriers (subscriptions, licensing fees, pay-per-view fees) so that anyone can view the full content of the work, regardless of socio-economic status or affiliation. Beyond being able to access just the content, because of less copyright restrictions, authors of OA materials can also give users permission to create derivative works.

OA is compatible with peer review and often still includes all rigorous forms of vetting that traditional publishing does. 

Source: Peter Suber, Open Access Overview

Open Access 101 by SPARC

Subject Guide

What about OER and Open Data?

Open Educational Resources (OER) and Open Data are different than OA. OA focuses primarily on scholarship. OER focuses on learning objects, including worksheets, tutorials, syllabi, lectures, and lesson plans. Open Data is focused on making the raw data used to write the article or book open so that others can replicate and build upon it effectively. 

Questions? Need help? Ask a Librarian
Davidson College Library, Box 7200, 209 Ridge Rd., Davidson, NC 28035-7200
Creative Commons license logo for CC by-sa 4.0
This Davidson College Library Research Guides are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
All box-title icons from Entypo pictograms by Daniel Bruce —