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Long Embargo Periods and External Publication for Electronic Theses and Dissertations




Coates, Midge
Coates, Mildred


Embargo periods for Electronic Thesis and Dissertation (ETD) collections require librarians to balance the needs of content consumers (end-users) with those of content creators (ETD authors)--consumers want access to everything, while creators want to control access to their own work. A policy statement issued by the American Historical Association (AHA) in July 2013 recommended that institutions with mandatory deposit allow creators to embargo their ETDs for a period of up to six years. The reason given for the policy was that open access might endanger publication of ETDs as monographs. It was believed that a lengthy embargo would protect graduates’ ability to publish. The ensuing discussion increased awareness of embargo among faculty and graduate students in all disciplines. This poster will examine the local impact of the AHA policy on Auburn University (AU) ETDs by examining embargo selections from academic year 2009/10 through 2015/16. It will compare embargo decisions made by PhD candidates in the history department to those made by other AU students. It will also examine the publication of monographs based on AU history dissertations. Publication rates and the length of time from ETD upload to monograph publication will be compared for unrestricted and embargoed titles to evaluate whether embargo conveys a publication advantage.