As most readers of this blog know, CUNY recently launched Academic Works, an open access repository that is the ideal way for CUNY scholars to make articles, book chapters, data, etc. available to their research communities and the broader public.

Why should you care about Academic Works?  Let’s start with three key reasons:

1) Academic Works is the perfect place to satisfy grant funders’ open access and open data requirements. If you want more grants in the future, you need to learn how to comply with funders’ requirements for openness!

2) Academia.edu and ResearchGate.net are seriously suboptimal. First, they’re commercial sites. (Yep, despite its URL, which it never should have gotten, Academia.edu is not connected to any educational institution.) And commercial ventures might disappear at any time (taking your papers offline too), whereas Academic Works is designed to last for the long term, longer than commercial sites and longer than personal websites. They’re also much more likely to be smacked with (and blindly comply with) take-down notices from publishers. And, as commercial entities, they exist to make money. How do they do that? By forcing users to log in to see documents, tracking their actions, and selling that data. If you’re uncomfortable with how Facebook commodifies your information, you should be uncomfortable with Academia.edu and ResearchGate too!

3) Academic Works significantly boosts your visibility and impact. If your work is in Academic Works, it’s much more likely to be found and read. (Academic Works is designed to play well with Google and Google Scholar.) And, as a result, it’s much more likely to be linked to on Twitter, blogs, and news sites, and also more likely to be cited in future research. Yes: study after study has shown that journal articles that are freely available online are cited more by other journal articles. Academic Works also sends authors monthly download reports with detailed information about how much your work has been downloaded, in what countries, and by which institutions.

Curious whether you’re allowed to upload an article you published in a journal? Search SHERPA/RoMEO to find out what that journal allows.

Couldn’t make any of our workshops on Academic Works? Flip through the slideshow, read the handout, or visit our guide with step-by-step upload instructions. Or contact the Academic Works administrator at your campus for more information!.

CUNY Academic Works has an Author Dashboard that shows you how much your works have been downloaded and from where!

CUNY Academic Works has an Author Dashboard that shows you how much your works have been downloaded and from where!