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CUNY Academic Works - Librarian Toolkit: About

A guide for CUNY librarians in support of the CUNY-verse

What's in this guide?

The purpose of this guide is support librarians working with CUNY's open access institutional repository, Academic Works. If you have additional questions or would like to provide feedback about the guide, please email the Scholarly Communications Librarian.

Stay Informed

Check out the OLS@57 blog for updates about CUNY Academic Works and other library systems.

Guide to CUNY Academic Works

Check out the Guide to CUNY Academic Works for up to date information about submitting to the repository.

Mission and Goals

CUNY Academic Works is a service of the CUNY Libraries dedicated to collecting and providing access to the research, scholarship, and creative and pedagogical work of the City University of New York. In service to CUNY’s mission as a public university, content in Academic Works is freely available to all.

It aims to:

  • Provide centralized, public access to the scholarly and creative output of the students, faculty, and staff of the City University of New York.
  • Promote research and collaboration within and between the twenty-four campuses that make-up the City University of New York, as well as the larger public.
  • Preserve the history and development of the City University of New York.


CUNY Academic Works provides for the preservation and dissemination of a full range of scholarship, including faculty research such as articles and conference presentations; educational materials; student works such as theses, dissertations, and prize papers; scholarly journals published by or associated with the University; digitized archival documents from CUNY’s libraries and special collections.

Included content is selected by the individual libraries, in consultation with the Office of Library Services. However, all content must meet the following criteria:

  • It must represent scholarly and creative output
  • Generated by students, faculty, and staff at the City University of New York
  • Available open access or on its way to being open access (i.e. embargoed for a temporary period of time)

History of CUNY Academic Works

March 2017: CUNY Academic Works reaches 500,000 downloads.

December 2016: Megan Wacha, OLS' Scholarly Communications Librarian, and each of the campus Academic Works Coordinators are awarded the CUNY-Wide Excellence in Academic Technology Award for their collaborative work supporting CUNY Academic Works.

May 2016: CUNY Academic Works hits 10,000 items in the repository.

May 2016: OLS expands its publishing services to include CUNY affiliated journals. Urban Library Journal migrates to Digital Commons and OLS publishes its first original journal, Art History Pedagogy and Practice, in collaboration with Art History Teaching Resources at the CUNY Graduate Center.

September 2015: All 24 colleges and schools from across CUNY launch their first collections in CUNY Academic Works. The Graduate Center's repository is folded into CUNY Academic Works, which is redesigned to allow campus branding to step forward.

March 2015: OLS hosted the Academic Works Kick-off and the Academic Works Roadshow, prompting campus libraries to launch their first collections in CUNY Academic Works.

January 2015: OLS hired Megan Wacha to be CUNY’s Scholarly Communications Librarian and launched CUNY Academic Works.

March 2014: The Graduate Center unveiled its institutional repository, Graduate Center Academic Works (now part of CUNY Academic Works). Also, CUNY’s Office of Library Services (OLS) announced that it would create a repository to include every campus.

September 2012: The Open Access Advisory Group began a university-wide educational effort about the need for, and many benefits of, open access in general and a CUNY repository in particular.

January 2012: University Faculty Senate created the Open Access Advisory Group to explore possibilities for an institutional repository and work toward making the resolution a reality.

November 2011: CUNY’s University Faculty Senate passed a resolution in support of the creation of a  CUNY-wide institutional repository.