Open Access News from the RSP team
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Why open access makes no sense

Why open access makes no sense | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"The fundamental argument for providing open access to academic research is that research that is funded by the tax-payer should be available to the tax-payer. Those who have paid for the research, it is urged, should not have to pay a second time for access to the publication of that research. Proponents of what has come to be called 'open access' claim that this is simply obvious, but in fact this argument mistakes the fundamental nature of academic research, it mistakes nature and process of academic publication, and it mistakes what is involved in providing access to academic research. I shall limit my claims here to research in the Humanities, but very similar arguments apply to research in the sciences also."

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Evaluating the Open Access software toolchain

Evaluating the Open Access software toolchain | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"I received an interesting email this week from Nate Wright, who posed the following questions: "I’m a web developer interested in contributing to a low-cost, open-source solution for online academic publishing. Prompted by a conversation with a former lecturer of mine, I’ve spent some time investigating the various open-source or low-cost options for digital journal publication (OJS, Scholastica, Annotum, Faculty, and the collection of tools being developed by the team at eLife).

It looks like OJS is the only open-source platform out there which can provide end-to-end capabilities for running a journal. In my own experience, though, I’ve grown wary of niche CMS’s, which lack a large body of tools and community support to help inexperienced site admins easily customise and extend their website. Even fairly large and well-maintained CMS’s, like Silverstripe, really suffer from the small size of their community developing plugins and themes. OJS seems pretty tightly bound to traditional publishing cycles as well, which will limit its utility as academic publishing transitions to new models. Speaking purely from the perspective of a mainstream web developer, if I was advising someone setting up a journal now, I would tell them they were taking a risk by committing to OJS. It’s not clear how a successful journal website could mature on the platform over time and whether or not data would be portable if (when) a better solution arises in the future."

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Chris Wickham considers open access in the UK and international environment

Chris Wickham considers open access in the UK and international environment | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"In his chapter for Debating Open Access, a new publication from the British Academy, Chris Wickham considers the view from Humanities and Social Science both from the UK and international environment. Since HSS disciplines receive only a small percentage of RCUK funds, HEFCE’s policy on the admissibility of work for future REFs will be the most important determining factor. Other countries do not have RAE/REF equivalents to drive them down the Gold route; hence they are more likely to stay with Green and with longer embargo periods. Some leading international journals, particularly in the Humanities, have set their face against Gold OA and the introduction of APCs. UK scholars in HSS thus face a dilemma. If they publish in noncompliant international journals their work risks being ineligible for future REFs; if they don’t publish in these venues they risk falling off the international pace. A particularly intense variant of this dilemma threatens those whose professional community does not operate in English. Future REF criteria will need to reflect these discipline-specific circumstances."

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Debating Open Access

Debating Open Access | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Twelve months after the publication of the Finch Report, during which the new RCUK policy on open access has been published, dissected, debated (including by committees in both Houses of Parliament), revised and implemented, it seems an apposite moment to step back and take stock.

 

A collection of essays published today by the British Academy under the title Debating Open Access presents one attempt to do just that. Given that the essays are published under the imprimatur of the British Academy there is an emphasis on the perspective from the humanities and social sciences — I am the only natural scientist among the eight contributors. This is healthy in my view, since the open access debate often appears to be dominated by scientific interests. That domination may simply be due to the fact that money talks — the natural sciences take the lion’s share of funding from the UK Research Councils — but, as Rita Gardner points out in her essay, around half of all UK academics are from the humanities and social sciences."

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Open Access Publishing: A Catalyst for Scholarly Research Publication

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Open access on the conference circuit

"Having devoted a fair number of the words on this blog to open access over the past year and a half, I have found myself invited to an increasing number of meetings on the topic. Whether run by RLUK, the Royal Society or the LSE, these meetings have invariably been interesting, but they often seem to bring together many of the same people, mostly from libraries, funders, publishers and learned societies.

And when we get together at some point one or the other of us bemoans that fact that despite holding all these meetings, the word on OA and the policy developments in the wake of the Finch report, appear to be diffusing only slowly into the world of academia. I have little doubt that there are many librarians around the country working hard to bring their faculty members up to date — and the British Academy has recently done some sterling work. Nevertheless I sense that progress is on the slow side"

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"The book is a conversation". Really ?

"The book is a conversation". Really ? | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Par­ti­cu­larly well orga­ni­zed and offe­ring a first-choice pro­gram, the confe­rence will remain in my memory as one of the most inter­es­ting that I was able to attend. Long confi­ned to very mar­gi­nal posi­tion of expe­ri­men­ta­tion, the open access publi­ca­tion of books in the huma­ni­ties is clearly beco­ming impor­tant today. It is true that the debate on open access to research results after the Finch report or the euro­pean recom­men­da­tion, was focu­sed until now not on huma­ni­ties mono­graphs, but rather on jour­nals, and firstly in science. Nevertheless, the great hall of the Confe­rence Cen­ter of the BL was packed and it reflec­ted the gro­wing inter­est in this issue in the aca­de­mic community. And from begin­ning to end of the confe­rence, we felt very clearly that the context was changing. Complementarity with the Ber­lin Confe­rence EPA in 2013 that I was also able to attend ear­lier this year is remar­kable: more tech­ni­cal and more focu­sed on eco­no­mic models, the Ber­lin confe­rence also sho­wed the same trend. In Lon­don, the conver­sa­tion was more theo­re­ti­cal, more intel­lec­tual, and was just as interesting."

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Open Access at Oxford » Open Access scenario 2: Going Green

Open Access at Oxford » Open Access scenario 2: Going Green | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"This is the 2nd in the series of scenarios. We meet an MRC-funded Oxford University Physical and Theoretical Chemistry Professor. Professor Smith has published two papers since 1 April 2013, when the RCUK policy on Open Access came into effect. In the example provided below Professor Smith was able to publish her paper Open Access via the ‘green’ route. 

Professor Smith, Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, supports the idea that research funded by taxpayers’ money should be made available open access. However, the access status of a particular journal is not her main criterion in deciding where to publish. When publishing she always asks members of her team: “Who do you want to read your paper?”

- “It is all about visibility, impact within communities and fit to the subject”, she says."

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Open and Shut?: Where are we, what still needs to be done? Stevan Harnad on the state of Open Access

Open and Shut?: Where are we, what still needs to be done? Stevan Harnad on the state of Open Access | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"The interview below is the second in a series exploring the current state of Open Access (OA) and what the priorities ought to be going forward. It is with self-styled archivangelist Stevan Harnad, who is currently Canada Research Chair in cognitive science at Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) and professor of web science at the University of Southampton.

 In 1994 Harnad posted an online message calling on all researchers to archive their papers on the Internet in order to make them freely accessible to their peers — a strategy that later became known as Green Open Access, or self-archiving. The message — which Harnad headed “The Subversive Proposal” — initiated a series of online exchanges, many of which were subsequently collected and published as a book in 1995."
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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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Open Government Licence v2.0 | The National Archives

Open Government Licence v2.0 | The National Archives | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"The National Archives has today launched the Open Government Licence version 2.0 following consultation with users and other stakeholders in the open data community on how the Licence could be developed further to reflect new and emerging thinking on the licensing of public sector information."

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OAbooks

YouTube videos of presentations from Open Access monographs in the humanities and social sciences conference. 1-2 July 2013, The British Library

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Nigel Vincent reflects on the Open Access monograph challenge

Nigel Vincent reflects on the Open Access monograph challenge | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Monographs are an intrinsically important mode of academic production and must not be sacrificed on the altar of open access, argues Nigel Vincent inDebating Open Access, a new publication from the British Academy. Book chapters are also a valuable and distinctive type of output which could find their visibility, and hence their viability, enhanced by an appropriate OA policy.

There are to date no agreed OA solutions in the domain of books. In developing OA models for books it is important that the peer review process as the guarantee of excellence is not compromised. Adoption of the untrammelled CC-BY licence is not appropriate for monographs and book chapters."

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Stuart M. Shieber discusses ecumenical open access and the Finch report principles

Stuart M. Shieber discusses ecumenical open access and the Finch report principles | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"The principles underlying the Finch report – access, usability, quality, cost and sustainability – are broadly to be commended, writes Stuart M. Shieber in his chapter for Debating Open Access, a new publication from the British Academy. However, the report’s specific recommendations are short-term prescriptions that may lead to a limited increase in the amount of OA at a very high cost. In particular, it equates open access journals and hybrid journals, offering support to both of these models. However, the hybrid model entrenches the dysfunctional subscription model to the exclusion of the competitive and sustainable open access model. A preferable approach is to require authors to provide open access, but to be ecumenical about how that is achieved – through self-archiving or open access or hybrid journals – while providing support only for true open access journals"

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

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Six paths to a global Open Access Repository | Tim McCormick

Six paths to a global Open Access Repository | Tim McCormick | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"The Web was created for scientific communication, but 20 years after its launch, only a small percentage of scientific/scholarly publications are freely Web-accessible/reusable. Only about 12% of publications are self-archived compared to an estimated 81% that could be[1]. Open Access publishing is growing but it covers only some articles, and comparatively little older, humanities, or book/other content. Repositories, run by parties other than publishers, containing possibly preprint or alternate forms of content, may offer much of the low-hanging fruit in expanding access to research literature"

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Open access journal hosting in City Research Online: Learning at City Journal

"We’ve recently been working with colleagues in City’s Learning Development Centre (LDC) and at EPrints Services to use our EPrints repository to host the LDC’s Learning at City Journal. The idea was to create a space within EPrints where electronic articles can be stored and served, with the layout, formatting, contextual information and branding you would expect from other e-journals you see on the web. The model for this was the University of Huddersfield’s Teaching in Lifelong Learning journal, which also uses a space within their larger EPrints repository."

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MedOANet European Conference | Mediterranean Open Access Network | Medoanet

MedOANet European Conference | Mediterranean Open Access Network | Medoanet | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"The National Documentation Centre, in conjunction with MedOANet Project, is pleased to announce the 2013 International Open Access Conference @ EKT, the third in a series of international conferences on Open Access organized by the National Documentation Centre since 2008.

The event will take place at the National Documentation Centre / National Hellenic Research Foundation in Athens, Greece, from 16 to 18 October 2013.

The Conference brings together specialists on open access, research policy-makers, such as research funders and research performing institution administrators, students and interested individuals to explore current trends in Open Access in Europe."

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The Imaginary Journal of Poetic Economics: June 30, 2013 Dramatic Growth of Open Access

The Imaginary Journal of Poetic Economics: June 30, 2013 Dramatic Growth of Open Access | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"Kudos to the Directory of Open Access Journals for an oustanding second quarter! In the past few months, DOAJ has added 912 titles for a total of 9,759 journals. That's a net growth rate of over 10 titles per day, up from the previous rate of over 3 titles per day. At this rate it won't be long before DOAJ exceeds the milestone of 10,000 journals. PubMedCentral growth continues to be very strong in spite of what looks like a bit of backsliding"

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Sean Thomas + Sands Fish on getting Open Access to work to those who need it

"More work is being published via Open Access, but are potential solutions it discusses being found by people who have the problems? What does the regional distribution of OA access look like? Sean Thomas and Sands Fish of MIT discussed this at the LODLAM conference in Montreal on June 20, 2013"

 

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Newly published essays debate future of open acces

"The British Academy today publishes a series of 8 newly commissioned articles reflecting on the challenges and opportunities for humanities and social sciences open access publishing practices. 

Debating Open Access - edited by British Academy Vice-Presidents Professor Nigel Vincent and Professor Chris Wickham - demonstrates that there is still much work to be done in ensuring that government policies to mandate open access publication do not damage the quality and reputation of UK academic research."

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NIH sees surge in open-access manuscripts : Nature News Blog

NIH sees surge in open-access manuscripts : Nature News Blog | Open Access News from the RSP team | Scoop.it

"In May, authors approved more than 10,000 peer-reviewed manuscripts arising from NIH-funded research to go into the agency’s online free repository, PubMed Central. That’s a huge jump from the average 5,100 per month in 2011–12, and suggests the agency is nearing its goal of getting everyone it funds to make their papers publicly available. (Numbers available in csv format; the NIH also publishes them, so far without the May update, here)."

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The proposed exceptions to copyright law offer greater flexibility to teaching and research activities

"Changes are afoot for how copyright laws apply to higher education settings. Emily Goodhand provides clarification on the recently announced proposed exceptions to copyright law, which are widely welcomed by the user community for bringing copyright law in line with current HE practices. Teaching and research activities such as the use of print extracts, digital text-mining and distance-learning media sharing seek to benefit from copyright clarification and flexibility."

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