Factors influencing use of open access repository: A case of Kenya Methodist University
Mwiti, Faith Mwendwa
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Institutional repositories (IR) are one of the innovations adopted by academic libraries to embrace the open access initiatives that advocate for free online access of scholarly research. Globally academic institutions are using Institutional repositories (IRs) as channels for capturing, archiving and disseminating their scholarly works. As (IRs) matures they encounter difficulties on how to of how to improve their operations to proliferate the number and variety of content archived. This study investigated factors influencing the use of KeMU institutional repository as a tool for enhancing open access. The specific objectives that guided the study were to: Examine Institutional Repository and Open Access concepts awareness level among the academic staff at KeMU; Assess to what extent do the library staff advocates the use of KeMU IR as a tool for enhancing Open Access; Explore how user perception on open access publications influence the use of KeMU repository; Examine factors deterring content submission by academic and library staff to the KeMU Institutional repository.The study adopted both Innovation Diffusion Theory (IDT) and social exchange theory and, employed a quantitative research design and probability sampling techniques. The study population constituted 130 respondents and a sample of 98 was drawn using Yamane formula to calculate sample size for proportions. Data was collected using a questionnaire. The response rate was 84%. Data analysis was carried out descriptively using statistical package for social science (SPSS) version 20 and presented in form of tables and figures. The study found out that low levels of awareness on IR concept, lack of enthusiasm in advocating for the use of an institution repository, the negative perception towards the content submitted in an institution repository as well as lack of awareness on the benefits associated with submitting articles in a repository are some of the factors hindering use of KeMU repository. The study concluded that for KeMU repository to be vibrant in enabling open access of scholarly work, there should be a well laid out advocacy program to address issues relating the existence of KeMU institution repository and the importance of submitting research works in the repository. The study recommends senior university managers be sensitized on the importance of IR and why they should play a proactive role in enhancing use of the KeMU repository.