Bulletin No. 1, 2014

26   Chinese University Bulletin No. 1, 2014 Ms. Louise Jones Making Knowledge Readily Accessible to the World B rewing in the late 1990s, open-access stands for free, immediate online access to scholarly literature with full re-use rights. Open-access materials can include original scientific research results, raw data, source materials, digital representations of pictorial and graphical materials and scholarly multimedia materials. Open-access can make research work more accessible and accelerate the pace of innovation. Researchers can disseminate their works more widely and rapidly, and users can find texts and data easily, leading to discovery of new research areas and knowledge. As a response to the development of open-access, the University Library launched its first open-access collection, the Chinese Rare Book Digital Collection in November 2013. Based on An Annotated Bibliography of Chinese Rare Books in the CUHK Libraries and A Bibliography of Chinese Semi Rare Books in the CUHK Libraries , over 530 titles in over 2,100 volumes have been digitized to form the core of the Chinese Rare Book Digital Collection which was made open-access. This means the texts and images are freely accessible; they can be downloaded, copied and distributed. In other words, the world community can share the fruits of research and enjoy access to precious materials. Anyone can connect to the Internet and go to the open-access repository to search, read and use those ancient books such as the Annotations to the Book of Changes , which is over 700 years old, anywhere, any time. Ms. Louise Jones , University Librarian, said the digital collection contains some 320,000 full-text images of rare books, mostly published during the Qing dynasty, as at the end of 2013. In 2014 the Library, in cooperation with the Graduate School, plans to launch another open-access collection. The target this time is the theses and dissertations of CUHK MPhil and PhD students dating back to 1963. It is estimated that there are over 12,000 items, involving over one million images being digitized as part of the project. Chinese Rare Books Free for Download The effects of the Internet are felt far and wide. ‘By-products’ of the Internet—open- access and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs)—are global movements in the academia and higher education in recent years. The Chinese University rides on the new trends by uploading its rare books and courses to the Internet for free for the world community. Photo by Cheung Wai-lok