COAR advances the vision of a global knowledge commons.
The premise of the commons is that certain resources are a public good and should be available to all members of society. The knowledge commons applies this notion to the domain of scholarly communications and research knowledge. Transitioning to a knowledge commons means adopting new approaches to the design, funding and governance of scholarly communications, as well as changing the way research is assessed.
Diversity is an extremely important characteristic of the commons. Diversity in scholarly communications, referred to as “bibliodiversity”, has been in serious decline due to a concentration of infrastructures and the intense pressure on researchers to publish in high impact journals. Diversity in services and platforms, funding mechanisms, and evaluation measures will increase bibliodiversity by supporting the different workflows, languages, scholarly products, and research topics from different research communities.
By its very nature, bibliodiversity cannot be pursued through a single, unified approach. However, fostering diversity requires significant intentionality and coordination in order to avoid a fragmented system or a growth in centralization. To that end, COAR is working with other organizations to explore new pathways and models that will help nurture a diverse and inclusive knowledge commons.
In April 2020, COAR published a “Call for Action!“, urging the community to actively address the issues related to declining bibliodiversity.
Below you will find the recommended actions for different groups, as well as links to related resources.