Muscat, Sept 11 – The first Omani Virtual Science Library (Masader — Arabic for sources) has been launched by The Research Council (TRC) to aid the research activities of academics, university students and other public and private individuals.
The library will allow “free downloading” of materials from world’s top libraries, content aggregators and publishers for a month.
Dr Hilal bin Ali al Hinai, Secretary-General of TRC, said that Masader will offer seamless and affordable access to a wealth of global research material.
“Membership of the Oman Research and Education Network (OMREN) will make Masader available to universities, technical colleges and other Oman-based institutions engaged in education and scientific research. All resources are accessible from a single entry point.”
Before the establishment of Masader, the main library of Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) was the only major digital research resource catering to the academic community.
With more than 40 universities and colleges across the country, there was a need for a centralised national resource that could give all academics, researchers and students the access they needed to conduct high-quality research.
This is an important element of knowledge economy which Masader is helping to build.
One can get access to Masader via www.masader.om
The library is expected to serve as a gateway for global resources vital for research and scholarships. It works with key partners to constantly improve Oman’s access to the universe of knowledge as well as ensure the longstanding legacy of our content remains relevant as technologies evolve.
It will explore other services that expand access to resources and open up new opportunities for research, teaching and learning.
“Our aim is to achieve Oman Vision 2040, in which research, technology and innovation are viewed as cornerstones for a productive and competitive economy based on knowledge. We also aim to help prepare generations to adapt to an advanced environment that goes in line with the 21st century,” said Dr Saif al Haddabi, Assistant Secretary-General for Programmes and Scientific Research.
He said sponsorships will be offered for those interested. They can select a related sector or rely on Masader for the same.
The idea for the project was adopted by TRC in 2013 when a steering committee was set up. A year later, a technical experiment was conducted followed by other experiments and budget approval in 2015.
Zainab al Nassri