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KU Libraries announce naming of Shulenburger Office of Scholarly Communication & Copyright

Monday, November 3, 2014

KU Libraries are pleased to announce the naming of the “Shulenburger Office of Scholarly Communication & Copyright” in honor of former University of Kansas provost and executive vice chancellor David Shulenburger.

Lorraine Haricombe, dean of KU Libraries, said the naming recognizes a recent major gift from Shulenburger and his important role in laying the foundation for the university’s adoption of an open access policy. Haricombe explained that the gift will support programming and operations for expanding open access or public access for scholarly communication at KU.

“The naming of this office recognizes the work and generosity of David and his colleagues,” said Haricombe. “I believe this endowed fund is the first of its kind to advance open access initiatives at a research university. It is a true testament to their tremendous efforts and dedication to keep KU at the forefront of the open access and scholarly communication movement.”

KU Libraries partnered with faculty in 2009 to make KU the first public university in the United States to adopt a faculty-led open access policy. The overarching goal of open access is to provide global access to scholarly literature and research with unrestricted reuse of the content, including articles and data.

“I made this gift to improve public access to scholarly communication at the University of Kansas,” said Shulenburger. “During my time as provost at KU, I made a commitment to expanding open access at KU, and I am pleased with the outstanding progress. The only way to ensure continued growth and continuity of the open access movement is through an endowment.”

Under the leadership of Ada Emmett, head of the Shulenburger Office of Scholarly Communication & Copyright, and KU Libraries Assistant Dean Erin Ellis, the unit will be able to more effectively encourage, support and reward faculty and graduate students for their efforts to actively shift the scholarly communication system toward an open, equitable and fair system.

“KU Libraries are now afforded the opportunity to award innovation and excellence, attract speakers and collaborators able to advance our initiatives, and develop innovative projects that can be accomplished with student support,” said Haricombe. “All this and more may be possible from this gift.”

A consortium of donors have also contributed to the fund in Shulenburger’s honor, including William J. Crowe, former dean of KU Libraries.  “Dave made this cause—now encapsulated as “open access”—his own in the mid-1990s and since then has carried his message—with visionary and practical strategies to meet these challenges—across the world,” said Crowe. “How can we—as librarians, scholars, as Americans—not join in supporting the next stages of work in this great cause?”

Those interested in making a contribution to the fund to support Shulenburger’s commitment to open access at KU can contact Debbie McCord, KU Libraries development director, at or 785-832-7372

Gifts like David Shulenburger’s lift our university to greater heights, and help meet the goals of Far Above, the university's comprehensive fundraising campaign.

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