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flavoursofopenscience's bookmarks 2022-09-20
by Ashley Farley
Since 2015 I’ve been steeped in the world of open access, academic publishing, and funder policies. This is a blip of time compared to many other experts and advocates in this space. I’ve often sardonically joked that if I had received a dollar for every time I’ve heard that open access will become the norm once the United States changes its policy I could retire early. I remember attending a funder convening at the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) in 2018 feeling both the urgency for systemic change and the weight of publisher lobbying to protect the status quo. It’s certainly something I never thought would happen in my career. Thus, I was elated to see the announcement that the OSTP is updating its guidance to make federally funded research freely available without embargo. This feels like an important and needed tipping point for the United States. It’s a chance to catch up with other parts of the world (Europe, Australia, Netherlands, Latin America, etc.) that have been prioritizing and delivering on open science for many years now.
One reason this announcement is so important is that it confirms the conviction of many who have taken risks and pushed against the status quo with the inherent belief that change is necessary. This is a proof point that the work and sacrifices made are creating momentum and advancements. I want to take the time to thank the funders and academic institutions that have implemented and enforced strong policies with the goal of adapting the behaviors of their communities. This is never a fun endeavor, and no matter how carefully one constructs policy you are inconveniencing or creating conflict for someone. I’ve been proud that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation joined cOAlition S early on and has been actualizing Plan S principles. It hasn’t been easy, and I will be the first to acknowledge when criticisms of Plan S are well-founded. We can and should always strive to do better. And I believe we have throughout the years. However, it’s not easy to set policy as a funder as there are pressures coming from all sides: grantee authors are concerned about career advancement and don’t want to alter their publishing habits, while on the other side you have publishers pushing back on and resisting policy. Oftentimes authors and publishers align in a semi-parasitic symbiotic relationship where authors strive to publish in a journal with the highest reward potential for their career and publishers benefit from this competitive nature. In the hierarchy of needs, authors will place future career advancement over funder policy compliance. And the publishers don't have the incentive to be flexible to meet those policy requirements. What gets lost in all of this is ensuring that knowledge is openly and easily shared globally to solve problems.
From feeds:Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) » peter.suber's bookmarks
Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) » flavoursofopenscience's bookmarks