The theme of this year's Open Access Week is "It Matters How We Open Knowledge: Building Structural Equity." Publishing materials open access means making them more widely available to the scholarly community and public. (Read a quick guide to open access here). But that is not enough to make scholarship open when some groups do not have the same ability to participate in scholarly conversations, not to mention the potential difficulties of making work open.
Engaging with our community at Loyola, and the communities that are important to our faculty and students is a way that the University Libraries support equity in open scholarship. After nearly ten years of our institutional repository, eCommons, we have help hundreds of people to make their work open, and have thousands of items with 6.3 million downloads. We have partnered with students and faculty across campus to help them get their data out to the public. One recent example is the Loyola University Chicago Herbarium. We partnered with faculty in the Biology Department to help move their data into the Consortium of Midwest Herbaria, thus making this important resource at Loyola more widely available.
We have a number of ongoing collaborations with faculty and students across campus to support journals, conferences, digital scholarship, and open access publishing. You can see some of these projects and learn more about our services on this page.