New Library Services
The WU Library sees itself as a service provider, offering support to library patrons in their research and publication activities. The library’s services go far beyond just borrowing books: Library staff offer training workshops and eLearning programs on information skills, deliver high-quality data, and offer support for open access publishing.
Using the resources and services provided by the library efficiently is an important skill for a successful academic career. The WU Library offered 74 information skills courses in 2016, which were attended by almost 2,000 participants.
Course materials are also available over the eLearning and communication platform Learn@WU. The eLearning area is publicly accessible and optimized for mobile devices.
With its Open Access Policy concluded on September 27, 2016 and the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities, WU is committed to the principle of free, open access to scientific literature and research results.
For this reason, the library has created a new service center, concentrating all the library’s open access publishing activities in one place: the Open Access Office. Existing open access services, like the ePubWU platform and self-archiving support services (determining authors’ rights, version control, etc.), were expanded as well. Additionally, WU researchers can now publish their articles in open access format in academic journals published by Springer free of charge, and at reduced rates with Sage publishing.
Comprehensive Collection of Business and Statistics Data
In 2016, the WU Library was able to further expand its already comprehensive collection of statistical and company data by adding databases from the OECD, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the United Nations, WIFO, Statistics Austria, and Statista. These valuable resources give the WU community access to macroeconomic indicators, trade statistics, microdata, and demographic data. For researching financial market data and sector and business information, library patrons can access data from Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters, Bureau van Dijk, Fitch Connect, and the Wharton Research Data Services platform.
To allow users access to the databases, additional workstations were added to the library’s Finance Area in 2016.
University Archives Established
Recently, WU has been actively investigating its own history. Since 2010, a project has been conducting research intended to identify Nazi-confiscated items in its collection and return them to their rightful owners. A commemorative project, started in 2012, deals with the history of the university during the period of Austria’s Anschluss to Nazi Germany. A memorial was erected in a central location on campus to commemorate those members of the university community who were expelled, persecuted, and murdered during the Nazi regime. Biographies of the victims have been recorded in a virtual memorial book, available online.
The University Archives was established at the library in 2016. Its responsibilities include:
- Finding, restoring, and preserving records pertaining to WU and its history
- Project-oriented historical research
- Telling WU’s history through exhibitions, publications, or lectures
WU Joined Complexity Science Hub Vienna
Modern society is becoming increasingly interconnected. Humans, computers, and markets are more closely intertwined than ever before. Societies must therefore develop the skills needed to deal with such complex systems, to interpret them using new mathematical models, and to understand them. The Complexity Science Hub Vienna is an initiative of a group of Austrian universities and research institutions (WU, TU Vienna, TU Graz, Medical University of Vienna, Austrian Institute of Technology, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis), established to promote research into complex systems using big data.