Prime Time for Public Access (SPARC) 2012-03-08


“Over the past several months, a remarkable series of events have conspired to bring the issue of access to publicly funded research squarely to the forefront of the public consciousness. In November, the White House signaled its continuing deep interest, with the Office of Science and Technology Policy issuing a detailed request for public input (RFI) on the potential impact of establishing a national policy framework to ensure public access to the results of federally funded scientific research... The RFI generated hundreds of thoughtful responses that examined the potential impact that a properly implemented public access policy could have on democratizing access and accelerating scientific progress.  Just as critically, the discussions delved deeply into an exploration of how such access might benefit businesses... It was against this backdrop that a new piece of legislation, H.R. 3699, The Research Works Act  (RWA), was quietly introduced in mid-December by Reps. Issa (R-CA) and Maloney (D-NY). With no fanfare and no public press release, the bill, which would prohibit U.S. science agencies from requiring public access to their funded research, could have very easily slipped past the public’s radar... But perhaps of most note was the surge of protest that arose directly from the scientific community.  Researchers whose freedom to share their research papers is directly threatened by the RWA, stepped up to the plate and began speaking out... A remarkable thing occurred; instead of simply voicing concern and moving on, researchers pushed for action.  While the American Association of Publisher endorsed the bill, ten of its member organizations have since issued public statements opposing the bill. Major publishers  - including the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), publisher of the journal Science, and the Nature Publishing Group – went on the record opposing the RWA, and for the first time, stated their public support for the NIH Public Access policy... Providing yet another platform for disaffected scientists, Fields Medalist Tim Gowers called on his colleagues to stop publishing in or providing editorial review for journals published by Elsevier, the RWA’s staunchest supporter.  A public petition site was quickly established... The Federal Research Public Access Act (FRPAA)– a bipartisan bill introduced today into the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives – presents a crucial opportunity for... action. The bill builds on the successful NIH Public Access policy and would ensure that all articles resulting from U.S. federal science funds are made available, online, to the public within a reasonable time after publication in a peer reviewed journal. Expressing support for this legislation will build on the momentum generated by the White House-sponsored RFI discussion, and keep the academic and research communities squarely at the forefront of helping to construct a positive, collaborative policy solution to an issue that speaks to the core of how knowledge is shared. This is a unique moment in time when the spotlight is shining directly on the need for greater public access to taxpayer funder research.  Take action now. For a list of suggested actions you can take, please take a moment to visit our Call to Action page."



08/16/2012, 06:08

From feeds:

Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) »

Tags: oa.npg oa.business_models oa.publishers oa.comment oa.mandates oa.usa oa.frpaa oa.legislation oa.negative oa.rwa oa.nih oa.advocacy oa.signatures oa.petitions oa.boycotts oa.elsevier oa.copyright oa.aaas oa.sparc oa.aap oa.policies



Date tagged:

03/08/2012, 11:04

Date published:

02/16/2012, 17:17