Yuan Li elected to SPARC Steering Committee

Yuan Li, Princeton University Library’s (PUL) Scholarly Communications Librarian, was elected to the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) Steering Committee.

Founded in 1998, the coalition is a public advocacy organization that supports open and equitable systems for research and education, with a focus on policy change and community cultivation. As a member of the Steering Committee, Li will help oversee the Executive Director and determine SPARC’s mission, strategy, operating priorities, policy positions, and programming.

Yuan Li

“The Steering Committee also oversees SPARC’s finances and approves the NVF-SPARC Project Charter, which grants NVF oversight authority for legal, fiscal, and administrative purposes,” explained Li. “All committee members will participate in the decision making in all aspects of organization operations.”

Serving on SPARC’s steering committee is an outgrowth of Li’s passion and dedication to the field of open access. She’s been a participating member of SPARC for the last decade, having presented posters and papers at the SPARC annual conferences, as well serving on the SPARC Advisory Group for Open Access Week 2021.

“In the recent few years, I’ve served on three SPARC working groups, including the Campus Partnership Working Group, the Strategy Priorities Working Group (the former Journal Negotiation Working Group), and the Data Analysis Working Group,” Li said. 

Li’s involvement with SPARC is a natural extension of her work at PUL. As the Scholarly Communications Librarian, Li works to develop programming and resources that support and enable Princeton authors to publish their research in open access and help them comply with institutional and funders’ open access requirements.

The Open Access Repository, for example, launched in 2016 to collect, archive, and share Princeton research in accordance with Princeton’s Open Access Policy. The Open Access Publishing Program, as another example, launched in 2021 to facilitate both the publication of open access research and to encourage Princeton scholars considering their options for creating peer-reviewed literature.

Li’s work at PUL also supports the backend of open access publishing. She initiated and developed the Open Access Publication Fund Program, which helps Princeton authors with Article Processing Charges (APC). She and her colleagues also negotiated and signed open access agreements with publishers to cover APCs, including the Association for Computing Machinery, Cambridge University Press, the Public Library of Science, Wiley, and the Institute of Physics.

The annually celebrated Open Access Week serves as something of a culmination of her and her colleagues' efforts, with Li creating and facilitating programming dedicated to education around open access opportunities placed front and center.

Through all of her efforts at PUL and with SPARC, Li contends that her biggest motivator for continuing to work in the field is change.

“Believe it or not, what I like the most in the field of Open Access is the constant change,” Li said. “I understand that people may fear or resist change because it can cause uncertainty and insecurity. But for me, it’s the opposite.”

Li added, “New things make me excited and trigger my curiosity to learn more. Since the beginning of open access from two decades ago, the landscape of open access is ever changing. I am lucky to live in this era to be able to witness and contribute to the exciting changes in the field of open access.”

To learn more about Li’s work at PUL and the open access resources available, visit her Libguide page.

Published on February 10, 2023

Written by Brandon Johnson, Communications Strategist

Media Contact: Barbara Valenza, Director of Library Communications