The 2009 version of Ithaca’s Faculty Survey 2009: Key Strategic Insights for Libraries, Publishers, and Societies was recently published and the results show little progress in attitude towards open scholarship by US academics. The study (fourth in an tri-annual series) surveyed 3,025 faculty (8.6% of those invited) about their attitudes and behaviour related to a range of scholarly activity and especially scholarly publishing. The figure below demonstrates that attitudes are changing VERY slowly towards sharing and distributing academic results more openly.
I had hoped to see growing interest in making our work accessible to developing countries and to the general public, but this seems not to be happening. Likely the constraints and attitudes from tenure and promotion committees, coupled with the growing access to “closed” publications through high priced (to the libraries, not the academics) journal databases,serve to decrease the value of participation (for these academics) in open publication.
One positive sign was the growing interest participation (or intent to participate) in accessible archives. See figure below:
Note the increase of 20% of faculty who intend to publish on their web site- maybe a reason why many institutional archives (including AUspace.athabascau.ca) have less than stellar contribution rates by our academics.
All in all the report is a bit discouraging, but reminds me of the old joke why geologists are so over represented in University governance- They are the only ones who really understand the speed of change in these institutions!!
(thanks to Mike Barbour for this link)