Saudi Arabia

In Saudi Arabia, there has been a positive and steady response towards Open Access among the different stakeholders in the community by academia, researchers and librarians through participation in Open Access journal publishing initiatives, supporting Open Access repositories.

In the Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR), Saudi Arabia has four repositories KFUPM ePrints by King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, King Saud University Repository by King Saud University, makhtotaمخطوطة  by King Saud University, Umm Al-Qura University Reference Repository by Umm Al-Qura University added to them Knowledge by King Saud University registered in openDOAR.

Twelve open Access journals from Saudi Arabia Directory of Open Access Journal (DOAJ) are listed: Annals of Saudi Medicine, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Arts and Humanities, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Earth Sciences, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Economics and Administration, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Engineering Sciences, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Islamic Economics, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Marine Sciences, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Medical Sciences, Journal of King Abdulaziz University : Meteorology, Environment and Arid Land Agriculture Sciences, Journal of Family and Community Medicine, Saudi Journal of Anaesthesia, and Saudi Dental Journal.

Researchers from KSA publish articles in international Open Access journals, for example 269 research articles have been published with BioMed Central – an STM (Science, Technology and Medicine) publisher which has pioneered the Open Access publishing model– and among them are highly accessed (most viewed) articles published by researchers from King Saud University, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre, and College of Science King Saud University.

Enabling Environment

Saudi Arabia aims to become a regional leader in an information society and the field of Information and Communications Technology (ICT). This will be achieved through the Kingdom’s 20-year ICT plan which aims to conclude the ICT’s Home PC Initiative. Saudi Arabia is already the largest telecommunications market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, constituting 30% of the overall market share. The Saudi Arabia government spends heavy investment in education with One Billion SR for e-education projects. Current Internet subscribers are 1 million and broadband usage is a miniscule.

In Saudi Arabia, there has been a positive and steady response towards Open Access among the different stakeholders in the community by academia, researchers and librarians.

Major Projects and Initiatives

Nidae Al-Ryadh of Free Access to Scientific and Technical Information was the first Arabic declaration in support of OA by the participants in the Second Gulf-Maghreb Scientific Congress (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, February 25-26, 2006), which calls for free access to all scientific literature on the internet. It supports the idea that scientific literature should be disseminated without any financial, legal, or technological barriers except those concerned with the intellectual property for the author.

Saudi Digital Library (SDL) aims to support university education system and meeting the needs of beneficiaries in higher education institutions in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Celebrating Open Access week, on October 2009, KAUST Library at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Thuwal, celebrated the Open Access week. The KAUST Library emphasizes support for "e-science" through its digital repository, web-based services, data curation, and full exploitation of the University's extraordinary IT infrastructure. Faculty of information and computer science, King Fahd University also held a workshop for faculty on Open Access and open source. On 2011, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology will be celebrating the Open Access week.

On April 2011, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) is one of the latest universities to launch an open-access repository with Open Repository, based on DSpace technology. The launch of this repository will enable KAUST to present the institute’s research and provide a searchable index that can be showcased worldwide.

King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM) libraries are one the first Libraries in the Middle East that integrated the new technologies to create its own digital library for its student community. The library has launched an ambitious project in order to transform into a digital library. KFUPM also provides a variety of technological facilities such as on-line and CD-ROM searching of bibliographic, full image, multimedia and numerical databases, as well as virtual audiovisual services

King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) with its partner, Springer, are launching five international scientific journals on the first five strategic technologies (Water, Oil and Gas, Petrochemicals, Nanotechnology and Biotechnology). The first issues started to appear in 2011, namely: Applied Water Science, Journal of Petroleum Exploration and Production Technology, Applied Petrochemical Research, Applied Nanoscience, and 3Biotech.

In 2007, a study conducted by Jawhraa Abdul Rahaman, to explore the contentment of academics in universities in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia towards open Access publishing - 63.4% of the total participants in the study showed their desire to have their scientific publications available for free access on the Internet in future, compared with 22.4% reported that they do not support the idea.

Key Organizations

King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), current projects launching Open Access Journals: Applied Water Science, Journal of Petroleum Exploration and Production Technology, Applied Petrochemical Research, Applied Nanoscience, and 3Biotech.

Communication address: P.O Box 6086, Riyadh 11442, Tel.: +96614883555, Fax: +96614813274, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals (KFUPM)- integrated the new technologies to create its own digital library for its student community.

Communication address: Dhahran, 31261, Saudi Arabia. Tel.: +966 (3) 860 0000.

 

(Modified on December 2013)

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