I want to thank the members of FUN for their confidence in me, as I was elected chair of our network for the period 2019-2020.
FUN was reorganized in 2018 from a council to a network. At the same time, the new name FUN Finnish University Libraries’ Network was introduced, as was the new logo and motto: “Fun – fuelling research”.
From the beginning of 2019, the number of members in FUN has decreased to fourteen, as two universities in Tampere and their libraries have merged. The new Tampere University Library serves both the universities and Tampere University of Applied Sciences. As the director of Tritonia, a joint library since 2001, I warmly welcome Tampere University Library also to the community of joint libraries.
I participated in writing the FUN strategy for 2018-20, and halfway through the strategy period I am pleased to note that the main themes – Impact – Visibility – Experiment – are more relevant than ever. There is still a lot of work to be done in these fields. Emphasizing the impact and expertise of the university libraries requires ability to make our competence visible. During the following period, we aim to start building a toolkit for impact and to benchmark international practises. The challenges of the university libraries are to a great extent the same for all universities, also internationally. On a national and global level, it is a waste of resources to try solving problems alone. During 2009-2016 I was a member of IFLA:s Continuing Professional Development and Workplace Learning Section, and those years strengthened my opinion on the need for continuous learning and for networking.
The open science megatrend and the acts to promote it, such as Plan S of European research funding organizations, are fundamentally affecting our operational environment. The business models of licensed e-resources have diversified and nowadays there are a variety of open access models available, where producing and publishing data form the basis for costs. The university libraries want to promote open access solutions which are easy to use for the researchers, sustainable, and responsible. The university libraries also want to promote students’ science education for openness, through multi-step information literacy education.
In autumn 2018, the coordination for open science was initiated in Finland, including preparations for national open science policies and action programmes. It is essential that the experts at university libraries are actively participating in this work. In Acatiimi 2/2019, there is an article (in Finnish) about open science services and competence needs in university libraries, written by colleagues at University of Eastern Finland (Rosti, Saarti & Silvennoinen-Kuikka) http://www.acatiimi.fi/2_2019/7.php.
Continuous learning is vital for all of us in order to master research data management, data mining, AI, blockchains, as well as many other phenomenons, not even invented yet. Let us do it connectively!
Wishing you all an inspiring spring,