Austrian Transition to Open Access (AT2OA)

The Austrian Transition to Open Access (AT2OA) HRSM project, which is also funded by the Federal Ministry for Science and Research, has set itself the aim of assisting the transformation of closed access to open access for scientific publications and to evolve supporting measures. In total 21 Austrian universities are participating under the leadership of the Vienna University Library.

The following sub-projects are on the agenda for the end of 2020:

  • Analysis of the effect of a transition to open access
  • Funding of open access transition models
  • Creation, expansion and financing of open access publication funds
  • Promotion of open access publications and alternative open access publication models proposed by universities

Development and implementation of an acquisition process for Austrian university libraries

As public-contract acquisitions by university libraries are subject to the Federal Public Procurement Act (Sections 4 et seq.) and in accordance with the provisions of public procurement law, it is required that a procurement procedure be implemented.
During the project preliminary work, a tendering process will be carried out and legal advice will be taken during the course of drafting service specifications for the respective product groups (printed books, print journals, e-journals, e-books, database licenses, inter alia). Special attention is paid to consortium acquisitions and on possible synergies by forming purchasing syndicates.
This HRSM project has been funded by the Federal Ministry for Science and Research.

e-Infrastructures Austria

In January 2014, the three-year project, e-Infrastructures Austria, was initiated. The overall aim was the coordinated establishment and further development of repository infrastructures for research and teaching throughout Austria and efficient, sustainable research data management at all the 22 participating universities and three further extra-university establishments. The combined themes of repositories and research data link libraries more firmly into the teaching and research process and into scientific communication. The pursued project structure involved the various stakeholders (libraries, local IT service providers, local scientists and research establishments ) and thus, the project remained open to new partners and promotes joint projects within the universities.
The project, which was supported by higher education structural funds from the Federal Ministry for Science and Research, was concluded in 2017 and is being carried forward with the participation of some ten university libraries by means of the e-Infrastructures Austria plus project.


The ubifo members have for a considerable time been pursuing the development of open access with great intensity. In 2011, a work group was set up, which carried out an appraisal of open access in Austrian universities in the form of a survey. The Final Report has for the first time presented informed results on the status of open access at the individual universities.

Since its foundation in 2012, members of the ubifo have also been actively represented in the Open Access Network Austria, which has been set up as a joint activity under the organisational umbrella of the FWF Austrian Science Fund and Universities Austria (UNIKO) and they also participate in the five work groups, which are formulating the specific recommendations on major aspects of open access for institutions in Austria: open access policy, funding of open access, legal and political framework conditions, publication models, inclusion of scientists

Quality management

The members of the ubifo are engaged in dealing with issues of quality management in university libraries and are endeavouring to develop a course of action in agreement with the respective universities.

Pursuant to the University Act 2002 on Quality and Performance Assurance, the universities must create their own quality management systems. In accordance with the provisions of the Higher Education Quality Assurance Act, these must be subject to an audit at regular intervals.

Hitherto, the quality management systems of two university libraries have been certified through a quality assurance agency registered in the European Quality Assurance Register for Higher Education (EQAR) or another internationally recognised, independent quality assurance agency.
In 2012, a further university library from the circle of members of the ubifo implemented a quality management system pursuant to ISO 9001:2008 and since then has successfully been subject to regular internal and external audits in accordance with this international standard.