22 August 2014

4000 items milestone: Featured researcher: Dr Fabiola Alvarez

In recent weeks we have been celebrating reaching 4000 items in the repository by showcasing some of the researchers who have been instrumental in attaining the milestone. We have already highlighted DR. Kim Mckee, Professor Derek Woollins, and Professor Alexandra Slawin for their invaluable input. In this blog we will be shining the spotlight on another researcher whilst also highlighting a highly important aspect of our repository: E-theses.

© University of St Andrews

Since September 2006 the University of St Andrews has required all theses to be submitted electronically to the repository. This has the advantage of making the details of research outputs immediately visible. In most instances the full text is also made available, thus increasing the visibility and impact of the research. One such thesis is The Scottish national screen agency: justifications of worth by Dr Fabiola Alvarez.
© University of St Andrews

Dr Fabiola Alvarez attained her PhD earlier this year. Her doctoral research was concerned primarily with the demise of the Scottish Screen agency for Scotland which was disbanded in 2010. In her thesis, Fabiola came to the conclusion that the incompatibility between different forms of valuation within the agency and among its stakeholders played a role in its demise, and specifically there were internal disagreements over the worth of projects which caused conflict over funding decisions.

We approached Dr Alvarez for her thoughts on Open Access:

"The thoughts that come to mind about open access is that it was definitely useful to me during my years as a PhD student (which obviously are still very fresh in my mind) and it continues to be so now that I'm working on my first academic paper. I hope that, by the same token, the possibility to easily access my and other people's work will be useful to others - not only students and academics, but also people working in other domains who, like me, would like to see a growing rapprochement between academic and non-academic activity."
© Scottish Screen
© Creative Scotland 2014
Creative Scotland has since taken the responsibility of distributing funding for Scottish creative arts. It is interesting to see that this year Creative Scotland set out a 10 year plan which aims to provide a "shared vision for the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland". Although it is not clear whether academic research influences public bodies, the value of such research being Open Access is that it helps to create further research and might positively influence public policy and decision making in the future – Fabiola’s vision of harmonious “academic and non-academic activity”.

So, from all of us in the Open Access and Research Publications Support (OARPS) team, thank you Dr Fabiola Alvarez for your contribution to the 4000 celebration.

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