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« Back Newsletter n° 6 / 09

September 2009

In this issue

Editorial: exciting developments

Dear Participants

Let me share with you some of the exciting experiences of the last weeks. The network of participants is constantly growing with a very stimulating variety of persons. Newly registered are, among others, Ram Agarwal, professor at a school of Medicine and coordinating a bioethics program between USA and India and working on a paper on Hindu bioethics. Sonam Judon works as a librarian in an Engineering College in Bhutan, Luis Cleghorn from Panama workes for private companies, for the ethics commision of the government and is interested in business ethics. Tuhoni Telaumbanua from Indonesia is lecturer in a Christian theological seminary and is looking for online ethics documents for the students. The new participants can bee seen under Network and you can search and directly contact them by email!

From tomorrow, the online workgroups facility of will be used by an international editorial board for a global handbook on theological education, the International Labor Organisation ILO which is only five minutes walk from our offices in Geneva, is interested to cooperate on a workgroup on interreligious ethics for decent work conditions and a group of ethicists in Beijing is preparing cooperation with Furthermore, the 27 year old journalist and participant Victor Niusonda from Zambia is willing to coordinate the youth network of

You all are part of this network which is becoming vibrant!

Kind regards from

Prof. Dr. Christoph Stückelberger

The Library

New content in your library is proud to announce the availability of around 72'000 new documents on ethics and ethics related themes in the library!

This new content has been harvested in 367 open repositories around the world. Open repositories are data providers, that publish and openly share open access content. Most of the repositories are University servers, where the institution encourages its researchers to publish pre-prints or post-prints. The isolated data providers then open their content for “harvesting” to any system that complies with the OAI-PMH (Open Archive Initiative - Protocol for Metadata Harvesting) and which becomes part of an immense pool of open access content. Big aggregators of content, like OAIster for example, store all the data of numerous data providers in one unique digital catalog. gathers data from numerous data providers but tries, as far as possible, to eliminate from its list of open repositories the ones that don’t provide free full-text at all. (It is important to note however that you will inevitably find OAI imported items without full-text or that are linking to commercial full-text, since the majority of repositories mixes the commercial and open access types of content.) Furthermore, selects the ethics-related content within the content of open repositories (our 367 open repositories contain in total about 9.2 millions of metadata records, from which we selected about 72'000).

The selection process is done by using a list of keywords (in English, French, German and Spanish for now) that have to be found in the fields title, keywords or abstract of the metadata record: *ethics*; *ethic*; ethical values; morality; moral values; animal rights; case studies; case study; climate change; climate justice; common good; corporate social responsibility; corporate integrity; corruption; deontological; deontology; environmental responsibility; ethical; ethical culture; ethicist; fair trade; fairness; good governance; honesty; human dignity; human rights; injustice; justice; moral; professional integrity; public good; responsible leadership; social norms; social principles; social responsibility; social values; virtue.

This second selection definitely helps avoiding importing irrelevant content in the library but there is no absolute solution either for this problem.

We would very much appreciate if you help us improve the quality of our service to you by pointing out repositories that don’t offer full-text or that seem totally irrelevant to you. We will then investigate to see if the repository can be definitively eliminated without losing too much interesting content. To identify the repositories you wish to point out, display the document description by clicking on at the right of the title and copy the information contained in the field “identifier” (if the document comes from an open repository, the identifier always begins with “oai”).

In order to stay up-to date, the library will harvest the open repositories once every two weeks. Plus, new open repositories will regularly be added to the list.

The Network

New Youth Forum

Please visit our new Youth Forum which was specially built for young adults, students and young professionals.

It was built to enforce temporary theme-related discussions: until the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen on December 7th – 18th 2009 the topic will be “climate change”. Furthermore, it will extend your possibilities to share information, ideas and more concerning study related themes, teaching materials, scripts, etc.

Finally it will support you in sharing your experiences concerning job ethics and professional ethics. Therefore please also visit our online-library, supporting you with over 150 case studies!

We are looking forward to your contribution of own documents, of your experience and information as well as participation in discussions!

To all student participants: please do not forget to indicate “student” as your activity in your personal profile for that we can provide you with additional special news.

News from the International Secretariat

Cash payments to authors: important information on google books

In December 2004 Google launched its service called “Google Print”. In 2005 this service was renamed “Google Book Search”. The objective of Google Books Search is to build a universal library on the internet, full-text searchable with the Google search engine. From the beginning the project caused an important public debate on the copyright issue that Google is raising with this project. A first lawsuit was announced in 2005 by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) and the debate has not calmed down since.

In 2008 Google drafted the Google Book Settlement , which is an attempt to respond to the many claims they received, accusing them of violating the copyright law. It seems that in the definition which is given of a book in this settlement, the only works that are considered as protected by the copyright law are the books with US copyright or implying financial interest for a US company or citizen. The problem is however more complicated than that since the US are signatories of several treaties (Berne Convention, the WIPO copyright treaty) which try to rule copyright on an international level.

The Google Book settlement invites authors whose books have been digitized without authorization (before May 5, 2009) and who think this is against the copyright law, to fill in the claim form available at the following address: Authors need first to create an account. If the claim is legitimate, the author will get cash payment from Google (for more information on cash payments see:

The cash payments depend on the legitimacy of the claim, but will also depend on the hearing at which the judge will decide whether the settlement has to be accepted. This will take place on the 7th of October.