Open Access Week

October 25 -31, 2021 | Everywhere

Open Access and Open Data at the American University in Cairo

The Library at the American University of Cairo is a supporter of Open Access. Among other things, we host an OA journal to showcase undergraduate research, URJe (the Undergraduate Research Journal).

Every year, AUC Libraries try to raise awareness of the importance of Open Access for research and teaching, through a variety of activities. In keeping with the theme of the Common Reading Program at AUC, this year’s activities will focus on open access to data.

Throughout the week, there will be lunchtime talk by key stakeholders on campus to shed light on current data policies and practices at AUC. These talks are free and open to all, but aimed primarily at an audience consisting of faculty and graduate students at AUC.

The kickoff event will focus on future plans for data management at AUC. The Office of Information Management, and its affiliate, the Office of Data Analytics and Institutional Research (DAIR) are in the process of establishing a business intelligence platform based on a comprehensive infostructure on campus. Iman Megahed, director of DAIR, will give a presentation on AUC's plans for a data center, and share with the different stakeholders attending how such a platform will transform data analysis, access and utilization on campus.

In the second event of Open Access Week, the experts at AUC’s Centre for Access to Knowledge for Development (A2K4D) will talk about the potential and promise that data holds for development, with particular reference to Egypt.

The third event in the series will have a practical focus: Since many grant-giving agencies now require that a data management plan is provided as part of the application procedure, the Office of Sponsored Programs will present an overview of their services which support researchers at AUC in the application procedure. The event will also talk about existing services to deposit data in AUC’s Institutional Repository, and in open data repositories worldwide.

In the fourth, and final talk of Open Access Week, the Director of the Social Research Center, Prof. Hoda Rashad, will provide an overview of her Center’s experiences in curating research data, and speak about evolving policies on open, public data access in the Egyptian context.

The aim of these events is to stimulate a debate on campus about data, its uses, and about current policies pertaining to data access. We hope that the lectures and discussion will cause the local academic community to reflect on the ways in which research data is currently handled, and provide a stimulus for more open access to data.

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