Aquatic Sciences and Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA)

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ASFA Advisory Board approves new partnership agreement


ASFA recently held its Advisory Board Meeting, an annual event at which all partners, collaborating centres and associates are invited to attend. During the meeting, the ASFA Secretariat gave an update on progress on the year, including a revised partnership agreement and a major update of OpenASFA, the system used to create, store and share bibliographic references and abstracts. The partnership agreement is signed by all institutions who join ASFA and details the obligations they must fulfil and the entitlements they will receive in return. Due to the changes in technologies and increased volume of publishing since ASFA was first established, it was necessary to update the partnership agreement in order to continue to attract institutions to the ASFA partnership. Among updates to reflect modern technologies, such as harvesting and importing, there are two major changes which the agreement introduces:   

  • Reduced obligations of ASFA partners. In the previous agreement, partners were obliged to ‘monitor all literature produced in their country for ASFA.’ This has been updated to monitoring ‘all research published by their institution for ASFA.’ This was felt necessary as it is no longer realistic to expect a single institution to monitor all aquatic science literature in their country – this could exceed millions of journal articles, reports and books! Limiting monitoring to publications produced only by the institution is therefore realistic and should also provide most benefit to the partner institution as their publications will be visible on the ASFA information products. 

  • Allowing more than one partner per country. In the previous agreement, only one partner per country was allowed. However, due to the increased volume of scientific literature being published it was deemed appropriate to permit more than one institution from a country to join, as this will help to improve coverage on OpenASFA. 

The ASFA Secretariat is pleased that the Advisory Board approved the revised partnership agreement and will now work with FAO to have the agreement approved internally. If your institution is interested in joining ASFA, please contact: [email protected]

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