Open Access News from the RSP team
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Open access mandate narrowed in formal proposals

Open access mandate narrowed in formal proposals | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Initial proposals published in February envisaged requiring a certain proportion of submitted monographs to be open access. However, among the 260 respondents to an informal consultation on the plans there was “widespread concern about the extent to which open access is reasonably achievable” for monographs.

For that reason, monographs will now be exempt from the mandate. However, the funding councils’ formal proposals, published for consultation on July 24, make clear the exemption will only be temporary “in view of our expectation that open access publication for monographs and books is likely to be achievable in the long term”.

The “overwhelming majority” of respondents to the informal consultation agreed that it is not currently feasible to require data sets to be open access. Hence, the first open access REF mandate will apply only to journal articles and conference proceedings whose authors include UK-based academics."

 

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We cannot afford to keep research results locked away in ivory towers

We cannot afford to keep research results locked away in ivory towers | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Opening up British research may seem obvious, writes science minister David Willetts. But it is not just inertia that blocks this. The UK government is committed to greater transparency across the board. That is partly because, as David Cameron says, sunlight is the best disinfectant. There are other reasons for more transparency too, such as giving people the tools to fulfil their aspirations. Choosing the wrong course can be an expensive and dispiriting error. So we have published 17 pieces of comparable information on each university course. People from families with little history of higher education no longer have to fill in their UCAS forms in the dark."

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Before the law: open access, quality control and the future of peer review

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Free and easy to find

Free and easy to find | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"I can confirm for Richard Hoyle that the journal Theatre Notebook is run on such “old-fashioned lines that the editors give their time for nothing”, or at least nothing pecuniary (“Pipe-dream believers”, Opinion, 20 June). I would hope that most readers of Times Higher Education do not think this is “a waste of their time as academics”. Indeed, I expect that many readers can think of activities that they gladly undertake without recompense, including providing peer review, serving on national committees and speaking in local schools about university life. The Americans call it “service”, and it is an honourable tradition in academia."

 

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Open access inaction

Open access inaction | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

Jack Stilgoe: From time to time, it's important to pause the bureaucratic debate about open access and recognise how stupid scientific publishing is. Like many academics, I am currently trying to work out what I should think and do about open access. I share with many scientists strong personal commitments to the idea of openness. I am in this game because I think research is valuable, and I work at a University because I like the idea that research that should be in the public interest should mostly be publicly funded. Like many other academics, I find it utterly daft that such research is paywalled. Unlike some academics, I do not presume that the people who are able to get past these paywalls (other academics at rich universities) are the only relevant readers."

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Open Access and the looming crisis in science

"Foundation essay: This article on the open access and science by Björn Brembs is part of a series marking the launch of The Conversation in the UK. Our foundation essays are longer than our usual comment and analysis articles and take a wider look at key issues affecting society.

There is a looming crisis in science, and we must act now to prevent it.

Currently, the number of scientific papers retracted from a large database of thousands of biomedical journals is a mere 0.05%, a low rate. But recently this rate has been rising. That rise is so quick that, if the trend were to continue, as many scientific publications will have to be retracted as are being published by about 2045."

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Guide to Creative Commons » OAPEN-UK

Guide to Creative Commons » OAPEN-UK | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"An output of the OAPEN-UK project, this guide explores concerns expressed in public evidence given by researchers, learned societies and publishers to inquiries in the House of Commons and the House of Lords, and also concerns expressed by researchers working with the OAPEN-UK project. We have also identified a number of common questions and have drafted answers, which have been checked by experts including Creative Commons. The guide has been edited by active researchers, to make sure that it is relevant and useful to academics faced with making decisions about publishing.

This guide is made available in open access using a CC BY licence. Readers can view the guide online (see below) or downlaod a PDF copy. Print copies are also available – please contact Caren Milloy to order."

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The bottom line is that journals cost money

The bottom line is that journals cost money | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Open access is a utopian pipe dream, says Richard Hoyle. A recent issue of Times Higher Education featured a journal editor’s view of open access. The author, Gabriel Egan of De Montfort University, is all for it (“Green-eyed, no monster”, Opinion, 6 June). Indeed, he looks forward to one of the journals he edits, Theatre Notebook, becoming “an online-only, open-access offering”. Egan’s future is entirely digital. For this journal editor, however, this is an entirely implausible prospect."

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Peter Suber - Google+ - Once more: There's seldom a trade-off between prestige and open acces

Peter Suber - Google+ - Once more: There's seldom a trade-off between prestige and open acces | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Times Higher Education just published an accurate story with a misleading headline: "Scholars favour prestige over access."
http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/news/journals-ends-scholars-favour-prestige-over-access/2004383.article

Why is the story accurate? See the survey the story summarizes:  "UK Survey of Academics 2012," from Ithaka S+R, JISC, and RLUK, May 14, 2013. In particular see Figure 40 at p. 71. Here's how the authors of the survey interpret the results: "Three factors —all closely related to the prominence and reach of the publication— were rated as very important by more than 4 in 5 respondents: that the current issues of the journal are circulated widely, are well read by academics in their field, and have a high impact factor....And other factors —the journal’s accessibility in developing nations...and the journal making its articles freely available online so there is no cost to purchase or read them— were rated as important by less than a third of respondents overall."

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