Does mandatory policy help Open Access? | Open Science | Open Access News from the RSP team |

"How to disseminate Open Access? How to convince scholars, universities and research institutions that OA may help in the development of science? These questions are a never-ending topic of discussion in the scientific community. There are also many answers to these questions, and one of them is a mandatory OA policy for scientists, established by a government or university. However, the question is: does it really work?

The mandatory policy for OA has its supporters and opponents and this division can be observed pretty well during the discussions on the new regulations in the UK. The opponents may say that new rules favor one type of OA and marginalize the other (Gold vs. Green), that the objectivity and freedom of scientific research may be compromised, that freedom of choice is being limited, or that those who control funding will have undue influence on what is being published and where.

Many of these arguments may, or indeed touch upon the real threats that may arise with the introduction of top-down rules for OA. Unfortunately, there is always a shortage of funds for science, research and publishing. Each institution introducing rules concerning OA, whether it is a university or government, will take into account the financial factor and try to choose the best compromise. Of course, you can always argue whether the solution actually supports OA and scientists or not."