ACRL invites comment on scholarly communication research agenda

Contact: Kara Malenfant

For Immediate Release,
November 6, 2007

ACRL invites comment on scholarly communication research agenda

CHICAGO - A new report by the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) explores the gaps in our understanding of the ways that scholars create and share new knowledge. The report lays out a preliminary research agenda for creating greater understanding of the rapidly evolving system of scholarly communication - the way research results and new knowledge are registered, evaluated for quality, disseminated and preserved. Meaningful research about the system of scholarly communication will inform strategic planning for scholarly communication programs.

The white paper, "Establishing a Research Agenda for Scholarly Communication: A Call for Community Engagement," encourages academics, librarians and their key partners to gather more data on practices that both enable and inhibit the production of scholarship and its communication. The report identifies eight themes, with research possibilities in each area.

The paper resulted from a one-day invitational meeting in July 2007 to collectively brainstorm the evidence needed to manage and influence the changing environment. Attendees included representatives from ACRL, the Association of Research Libraries, the Council on Library and Information Resources, the Coalition for Networked Information, Ithaka, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition). ACRL scholarly communication committee co-chairs John Ober of the University of California and Joyce Ogburn of the University of Utah convened the meeting and discuss the report at

The document is available online for public comment at Please submit comments that:

  • Refine or expand the need for research, important issues and possible projects.
  • Identify additional articles and reports that collectively form a knowledge base from which the research agenda emerges more clearly.
  • Suggest ways to conduct the research.
  • Volunteer to participate or collaborate in a specific research initiative.
  • Propose additional avenues of distribution for the report.

Confidential comments may be emailed to John Ober at or Joyce Ogburn at

ACRL is a division of the American Library Association (ALA), representing more than 13,500 academic and research librarians and interested individuals. ACRL is the only individual membership organization in North America that develops programs, products and services to meet the unique needs of academic and research librarians. Its initiatives enable the higher education community to understand the role that academic libraries play in the teaching, learning and research environments.