Published: 23 October 2013

Committed to embracing academic openness

The University of Surrey recently celebrated Open Access Week, promoting free, immediate, online access to the results of scholarly research.

A global event celebrating its sixth year, Open Access Week provided an opportunity for the international academic and research community to learn about the potential benefits of Open Access, as well as inspire wider participation that makes Open Access the new norm in scholarship and research.

Through Surrey Research Insight (SRI), the University embraces Open Access by encouraging researchers to make their work freely available to everyone, while Surrey’s Open Access repository hosts, preserves and showcases the full text of scholarly papers produced by the University’s academics.

Content available in SRI is free to download by anyone in the world, without password or fee barriers, making the work of Surrey’s academics more widely accessible, read and cited. Over 90% of papers held in SRI are full text and the repository has grown by nearly 40% in size in the last year alone.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Christopher Snowden commented: “The University has long been committed to making our research highly visible, openly accessible and widely disseminated. In 2005 we set up the University of Surrey’s Open Access repository followed by a policy supporting the deposit of peer-reviewed literature into this service.

"Today our open access repository, now known as Surrey Research Insight Open Access (SRI Open Access), is growing rapidly in size. New items from every active area of research at Surrey—journal articles, published proceedings, book chapters, monographs—are being added every week. 

"We have seen over 1.3 million downloads of our research from over 200 countries. Open Access helps us reach new audiences worldwide and in doing so strengthens the recognition of our research, scholarship and staff achievements, and leads to higher citation rates of our publications.

"There are now over 1,100 University of Surrey PhD theses available for immediate download from the British Library. These titles have been digitised on demand from researchers worldwide to access the excellent work our research graduates generate.

"On the occasion of this year’s International Open Access week, I would like to highlight Surrey’s continuous commitment to open scholarly communication. In line with the rapid developments in publishing models, we will continue supporting our researchers in making the most informed and sustainable choices to maximise the visibility and impact of their research."

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