Open access: are effective measures to put UK research online under threat? | Science | The Guardian
" ... Much of the debate has revolved around efficacy and costs. It is widely believed that gold open access may be cheaper in the long run – particularly if it encourages transparent market competition – but it may be an expensive policy during any transition away from established subscription models. The policy implemented by Research Councils UK favours gold open access but leaves the final choice to the authors. While pragmatic, this approach risks ongoing confusion in the minds of academics in what is a complex policy area. However, moves towards open access received a significant boost earlier this year when the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HECFE) – acting on behalf of equivalent bodies for the rest of the UK – announced that only papers that have been placed in institutional repositories will be considered eligible for the next Research Excellence Framework (REF), a periodic exercise that assesses the quality of the outputs of UK university departments. This is a powerful linkage because REF assessments determine how HEFCE disburses its research funds and universities take them very seriously ..."