Open Access to academic scientific publications is one of the central objectives of present day research libraries and a continuing concern of LIBER. Much attention is paid to the way in which we can convey the same conviction to the members of the research community at our universities. It is unclear, however, whether we pass on the adequate information about this subject to the present and future librarians and information specialists during their professional education. The first paper in this issue investigates this problem by means of a joint survey in Germany and France. From the results of this survey several suggestions are made for improving our continuous professional education programmes.
Next to Open Access, the belief has been growing that our libraries also have an important role in promoting Open Science. One aspect of this latter concept is the sharing of research data, which should facilitate improved research performance. Our second paper indicates that the sharing of data also leads to an increase of the number of citations of the papers based on those shared data. This is the conclusion from a detailed analysis of the citations in some core astrophysical journals. If this can be shown to be applicable to other fields, it would not only corroborate the claim for improved performance, but it could also act as a stimulus for authors wishing to increase the impact of their papers.
We finish this issue with a review paper about gaming in our libraries. Times are long gone since libraries were considered those dull places full of dusty books, where only silence and boring seriousness reigned. But are we still too serious to allow for gaming, or do we believe that it cannot offer an added value for our academic libraries? In France they appear to believe differently. The authors describe a long series of examples of ‘ludification’ in French libraries, and they discuss in detail the motivations for doing so and its organisational consequences. In their conclusion they even suggest that gaming may be the new revolution that can shake up our organisations in the same way as digitisation did.
The cover picture for this issue shows the library of UCL (University College London), whose director Paul Ayris was the previous president of LIBER.