When Purdue Emeritus Professor of Civil Engineering Sidney Diamond published his work on “Methods of Soil Stablilization for Erosion Control” in 1975, he expected it to primarily be read in Indiana. After all, assisting the State to improve its transportation infrastructure was and still is the primary goal of the Joint Transportation Research Program (JTRP) (http://www.purdue.edu/jtrp) in whose technical report series Dr. Diamond’s work was published.
Today, however, the readers of report JHRP-75-20 (http://dx.doi.org/10.5703/1288284313904), the Purdue e-Pub’s 3 millionth download, are as likely to be in India, Brazil, and China as in Monticello or Frankfort. Thanks to Purdue e-Pubs, the University’s online publishing system run by Purdue Libraries, Sidney Diamond’s research is helping practitioners worldwide to cheaply and safely reinforce dirt roadways made unstable by heavy rainfall.
JTRP reports on Purdue e-Pubs are particularly heavily used. The more than 1,500 reports now online have been downloaded over 400,000 times. Previously buried in the basement of the Engineering Library, JTRP reports provide a treasure trove of invaluable information for transportation professionals and include papers by many Civil Engineering graduate students who have gone on to have distinguished careers. These include Delon Hampton, for whom the Civil Engineering building at Purdue is now named, and Essam Abdel-Aziz Sharaf, until recently prime minister of Egypt.
Through the involvement of publishing professionals at Purdue University Press (a unit of the Libraries), Purdue Libraries ensures that JTRP and the other publications on Purdue e-Pubs are discoverable, citable, and carefully preserved. By its commitment to open access, which means that all these documents are immediately free-to-read for anyone with an internet connection, the Libraries also ensures maximum, measurable global impact for Purdue scholarship.