Wellcome Library pledges support for Knowledge Unlatched open access project

Wellcome Library has signed up to a new open access pilot project, Knowledge Unlatched (KU). KU aims to make a collection of books, covering a wide range of humanities and social science topics, available on open access licenses through funding from hundreds of libraries.

Zina Sabovic, Head of Collection Management at the Wellcome Library, said: “The Wellcome Library supports access to published research in all its forms. Working with other libraries through Knowledge Unlatched will help us achieve this aim and will complement our own Open Access initiatives aimed at Wellcome Library users. We are therefore delighted to pledge our support for Knowledge Unlatched.”

Representing an additional route to open access for books, alongside funder- or author-pays models, the KU model allows participating libraries to share the cost of a single fixed fee to a publisher to ‘unlatch’ a book, making it available on a Creative Commons license via OAPEN as a fully downloadable PDF. As the fee amount is fixed, the cost per library for each title declines as more libraries participate in the scheme, ensuring that library spending results in the widest possible access to scholarly books.

By participating in the KU pilot scheme, the Wellcome Library will join other libraries and publishers in collaborating towards a sustainable open future for specialist books.

Frances Pinter, Director of Knowledge Unlatched, added: “We’re thrilled that the Wellcome Library has chosen to participate in the KU pilot project. It demonstrates support for experimenting with a number of routes to Open Access and the Knowledge Unlatched vision of a sustainable approach to unlatching monographs.”

Libraries can participate in the Knowledge Unlatched pilot scheme until 31 January 2014.