Note added 17 September: Many thanks to Hideki Uchijima, Librarian of the Kanazawa University Library, for providing a very comprehensive and conscientious response.
The response provides more accurate estimates of the percentage (11.1%) of Japanese annual refereed research article output that is currently being self-archived in the 158 Japanese Institutional Repositories that are being harvested by JAIRO, basing the estimate on the ISI Thompson-Reuters subset, an excellent first approximation (which we and others have also used to do such estimates), and confirming that Japan’s unmandated self-archiving rate indeed falls within the global average baseline of 5-25%.
Hideki Uchijima also adds the good news that Hokkaido University (already registered in ROARMAP in 2008 as having an OA policy, but not yet an OA mandate) might soon be upgrading to a self-archiving mandate (and this might encourage further universities in Japan to do likewise).
And last, Hideki Uchijima will now also try to persuade the IR managers of the remaining 81 Japanese universities (out of the 158 JAIRO total) who (unlike Hokkaido University and 76 other Japanese universities) have not yet done so, to register their IRs in ROAR.
If all librarians, IR managers and OA activists worldwide were as attentive and responsive as Kanazawa University’s librarian, the world would reach its goal of 100% OA far sooner. (Many are, but far, far more need to be!)
Note added 18 September: Andrew A Adams (Meiji University) wrote:
“During Open Access Week in October both Otaru University of Commerce and Hokkaido University will be holding meetings to promote deposit and adoption of a mandate. I have accepted invitations to speak at both events, arranged by Shigeki Sugita of the library at Otaru University of Commerce and Masako Suzuki of the library at Hokkaido University. Both are keen supporters of Green OA and a deposit mandate and are working hard to persuade managers and faculty at these two very different though physically close universities to adopt mandates (Otaru, being small and with limited funds has an access problem itself, whereas Hokkaido is one of the top ten universities in Japan…”
Congratulations to Japan’s JAIRO for harvesting the 700,000 full-texts (out of one million total) self-archived in Japan’s 158 Institutional Repositories since 2007.
To understand what this figure means, however, the fundamental question is whether or not it represents an increase over the worldwide baseline average for spontaneous (i.e. unmandated) self-archiving, which varies between 5-25% of the total annual output of the primary target content of the Open Access movement: the 2.5 million articles per year published in the planet’s 25,000 peer-reviewed journals across all disciplines and languages.
Of JAIRO’s 700K full-text total, about 110K (15.5%) consisted of journal articles, based on JAIRO’s statistical data.
From the growth chart (if I have interpreted it correctly), about 75% of 50,000 articles (i.e., 35,000 full-texts) were deposited in 2009. If we can assume that those deposits were all articles published within that same year (or the preceding one), then the question is: What percentage of Japan’s (or of those 158 institutions’) annual portion of the 2.5 million articles published yearly worldwide do these 35,000 full-texts represent? Does it exceed the worldwide unmandated baseline of 5-25%?
The reason I raise this question is because absolute figures — even absolute growth rates across years — are not meaningful in themselves. They are only meaningful if expressed as the percentage of total annual output. For a single institutional repository, this means the percentage of that institution’s annual output of refereed journal articles. For Japan’s 158 institutional repositories, it means the percentage of the total annual output of those 158 institutions.
On the conservative assumption that research-active universities publish at least 1000 refereed journal articles per year, the estimate would be that those 35K articles represent at most about 22% of those institutions’ annual refereed journal article output, which falls within the global 5-25% unmandated baseline.
The reason I stress this point is that it is important that we do not content ourselves with absolute self-archiving totals and growth rates that look sizeable considered in isolation. The figure to beat is the unmandated baseline of 5-25%, and the only institutions that consistently beat it are those that mandate self-archiving. Their deposit rates jump to 60% and approach 100% within a few years.
There are already 170 self-archiving mandates worldwide registered in ROARMAP — 96 institutional, 24 departmental and 46 funder mandates — but alas none yet from Japan. If there are any, it would be very helpful if they would be registered in ROARMAP.
Also, although Japan has at least 158 repositories, only 77 of them are registered in ROAR:
It would be very helpful if the rest were registered in ROAR too…
Björk B-C, Welling P, Laakso M, Majlender P, Hedlund T, et al. (2010) Open Access to the Scientific Journal Literature: Situation 2009. PLOS ONE 5(6): e11273.
Gargouri, Y., Hajjem, C., Lariviere, V., Gingras, Y., Brody, T., Carr, L. and Harnad, S. (2010) Self-Selected or Mandated, Open Access Increases Citation Impact for Higher Quality Research. PLOS ONE (in press)
Harnad, S, (2008) Estimating Annual Growth in OA Repository Content. Open Access Archivangelism. August 9 2008
Sale, Arthur (2006) Researchers and institutional repositories, in Jacobs, Neil, Eds. Open Access: Key Strategic, Technical and Economic Aspects, chapter 9, pages 87-100. Chandos Publishing (Oxford) Limited.
Sale, A. (2006) The Impact of Mandatory Policies on ETD Acquisition. D-Lib Magazine April 2006, 12(4).
Sale, A. (2006) Comparison of content policies for institutional repositories in Australia. First Monday, 11(4), April 2006.
Sale, A. (2006) The acquisition of open access research articles. First Monday, 11(9), October 2006.
Sale, A. (2007) The Patchwork Mandate D-Lib Magazine 13 1/2 January/February