Appreciating that research is international, and that we share an interest in developing a trusted global knowledge commons for open scholarship, the International Alliance of Research Library Associations (IARLA) exists to advance and promote a shared understanding of the major challenges and opportunities faced by modern research libraries.
Formed in 2016, the Alliance is a coalition of prominent academic and research library associations. Members acknowledge that research libraries must work collaboratively at appropriate scale regionally and internationally in order to foster and facilitate research. The Alliance will seek agreed positions on a range of cross border, cross domain and cross disciplinary matters central to the research enterprise. Its focus is on the development of an at-scale, collaborative environment by
- advocating for the openness agenda in research and scholarly communication through the curation , preservation and reuse of research outputs in both digital and analogue form, and
- fostering trusted research environments through the support of policies encouraging international collaboration among research communities and 21st century practices in intellectual property, research impacts and ethics.
In an environment in which proposals for the best way to support these activities are being regularly advanced and contested by many parties, the Alliance will focus its efforts on securing maximum efficiency and value to the research community and its funding sources, within a trusted infrastructure, on the basis of a shared international understanding as reflected in agreements such as the ICSU International Accord on Open Data for Open Science of 2015.
Activities of the Alliance include:
- identifying priorities for international research library attention via its member associations’ governance structures,
- commissioning evidence-based research as appropriate to assist in its shared understanding of complex issues and contested approaches, and
- brokering international partnerships among stakeholders to concentrate on at-scale international solutions.