Library Support for Digital Scholarship

The following statement was published on BU Libraries’ Digital Initiatives and Open Access (DIOA) website in 2010. Its principles still guide much of the work we do at Digital Scholarship Services today. The statement is presented as originally written, with the exception of an updated name for our institutional repository and some dead link housekeeping.

In 2019, DIOA became Digital Strategies and Innovations.

Boston viewed from East Boston (1906?)
Boston viewed from East Boston (1906?)

Emerging forms of digital scholarship enable researchers to engage new and larger audiences, transcend traditional boundaries between the academy and communities, and establish collaborative partnerships across disciplinary boundaries. The Web has effectively unbundled the production and consumption of scholarship. Publishing business models are shaken, information seeking and reading habits are changing, and the amount of information being created has radically escalated. An era of information scarcity has become an era of information abundance. With that, the Libraries’ collections, services and tools for information discovery and research are rapidly expanding to support digital scholarship.

Boston Red Sox (1913)
Boston Red Sox (1913)

Boston University Libraries continue to lead in building a cyberinfrastructure for faculty and students to support teaching, learning and research. The Office of Digital Initiatives & Open Access (DIOA) leads the University’s open access initiative, managing OpenBU and offering free e-journal publishing services to help academic journals who share our support of Open Access to research information make their content available to a global audience while eliminating the cost of print production.

Anonymous to Thomas Jefferson, July 26, 1801, Signed A Boston Merchant
Anonymous to Thomas Jefferson, July 26, 1801, Signed A Boston Merchant

DIOA consults with researchers and authors through the entire process of research and writing including developing data management plans for research data, understanding funding mandates, and guiding in matters of intellectual property and copyright. The Libraries are actively engaged in digitizing primary sources and collaborates with faculty in creating and managing digital collections for research and teaching. DIOA is actively engaged in research to develop ways to enhance interdisciplinary research using textual corpora.

Along with new opportunities, digital scholarship brings with it many questions. DIOA provides a forum for conversation about issues ranging from scholarly communication, peer review, tenure and promotion, open access, copyright, and other issues in academe affected by our digital culture.