MUT Library to host Open Access Week

Library staff giving some orientation to students in the Library

One of the many schools of thought on the value of education believes that it is a critical tool for an active citizenry to contribute positively to society. Among those who advance this normative role of education, is a group of scholars who believe that knowledge should be available widely for all to access it. One of the avenues through which wide access to knowledge is possible is through open-access publishing.

Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) Library is gearing up to amplify this message of making knowledge available to those who want it through the Open Access Week, which takes place from 24 to 28 October 2022 in various venues.

The theme of the Open Access Week celebration is “Open for Climate Justice”. The theme seeks to encourage connection and collaboration among the climate movement and the international open community.

“Sharing knowledge is a human right and tackling the climate crisis requires the rapid exchange of knowledge across the geographic, economic, and disciplinary boundaries. Open Access (OA) addresses the limited access to scholarly outputs usually caused by high journal subscription rates. It is the practice of providing online access to scientific information (articles, monographs, research data and other research outputs) that is free of charge to the reader and licensed so that they can be further used and exploited by researchers, the industry, and citizens,” said Andisiwe Magocoba, Information Librarian: E-resources at MUT Library.

Magocoba added that the MUT Library had invited a combination of local library user representatives from various research databases to share their knowledge of research information platforms with the MUT community as part of the Open Access Week. These speakers will talk about the availability of open access resources such as e-books, e-journals, and databases, as well as create awareness of other e-resources at MUT Library.

“A library is the cornerstone of anyone’s pursuit of the latest, reliable and scientifically-tested knowledge. The MUT Library has more to offer physically and virtually. Our plan for the Open Access Week is to take library users through what we have in store for them and how they can use the many platforms they have access to in their quest for knowledge and knowledge creation,” said Magocoba.

The week-long programme will start with a webinar on the Perlego online digital library on Monday, 24 October 2022, at Bozzoli Hall. Starting at 10h00, this session will be led by Dr Joseph Bwapwa, a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Civil Engineering at MUT. Dr Bwapwa is a frequent online library user for his lectures and for his research which he frequently publishes in peer-reviewed journals.

Day 2 (Tuesday, 25 October 2022) activities, which start at 11h00 in the MUT Library Internet Lab, will feature Dr Tobius Poswa, the Head of the Department of Environmental Health at MUT. He will share his expertise on using JoVE (Journal of Visualized Experiments), which is a peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes experimental methods in video format.

EBSCO Information Activities will take over the activities of Day 3 (Wednesday, 26 October 2022) with two sessions starting at 09h30 and 12h00, respectively. The two sessions, which will take place at Bozzoli Hall,  will be led by representatives from EBSCO.

Representatives of WWIS (Worldwide Information Services) will lead two sessions, starting at 10h00 and 13h00 at the MUT Library Internet Lab, on Thursday, 27 October 2022 (Day 4).

The final day of the Open Access Week (Friday, 28 October 2022) will feature representatives from Sabinet, who will speak on what their database offers. This session will start at 10h00 at Bozzoli Hall.

“We are calling on all MUT Library users to take advantage of this opportunity to learn as much as possible about the many features of their library,” said Magocoba.