The School of Advanced Study is in Senate House or, if you’ve seen the film of George Orwell’s 1984 starring John Hurt, the Ministry of Truth, fitting perhaps for a conference considering the modern information environment where science communication vies online with “fake news”.
“When the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) announced its open access policy last March the news was greeted with great enthusiasm by OA advocates, who view it as a “game changer” that will ensure all UK research becomes freely available on the Internet. They were especially happy that HEFCE has opted for a green OA policy, believing that this will provide an essential green component to the UK’s “otherwise one-sided gold OA policy”. The HEFCE policy will come into effect on 1st April 2016, but how successful can we expect it to be, and what are the implications of linking open access to the much criticised Research Excellence Framework (REF) in the way HEFCE has done? These are, after all, strange bedfellows. Might there be better ways of ensuring that research is made open access? …”
“Over recent years, Knowledge Unlatched has harnessed the effectiveness of its consortial funding model to become the largest gatekeeper to open access for scholarly books. But as Marcel Knöchelmann describes, the changing of its status from that of a community interest company to a German GmbH or public limited company, and that it is now fully owned by the consultancy fullstopp, has gone largely uncommunicated. This information has assumed greater pertinence and urgency following the decision to appoint fullstopp to collect and analyse data that will be used to inform future policy decisions on open access. The researchers, publishers, and librarians inevitably impacted by the outcomes of this consultation should be afforded the transparency to know that the parent company of the commercial entity which stands to profit from a future of open access book publishing is advising on what the future of open access book publishing in the UK should be.”
“Library & Student Support (LSS) supports the research and teaching priorities of Middlesex University by identifying the information needs of students, academic staff and researchers and by ensuring access to and specialist support for the resources which meet them.
We are seeking a Repository Manager to join the Research Support team in LSS to manage and develop the University’s Eprints-based research repository….”
Abstract: In a recent Insights article, Gareth J Johnson reports on research designed to determine the reasons that so many authors still fail to embrace open access (OA) publishing, despite many years of advocacy on the part of a dedicated community of OA practitioners. To answer this question, Johnson interviewed OA practitioners at 81 UK universities, seeking their insights into the attitudes of academic authors. In response to Johnson’s findings, this paper proposes three categories of authorial resistance, questions the effectiveness of asking third parties to interpret the thinking of authors (particularly when those third parties have a vested interest in the authors’ adoption of OA) and critiques some of the assumptions underlying the informants’ reports (most importantly, the assumption that resistance arises necessarily from misunderstanding or misinformation).
“The UUK Open Access Coordination Group works to ensure that the activities to support the transition towards open access in the UK can be effectively coordinated, have an ongoing focus and that progress can be monitored.
The group has no formal powers, but brings funders, institutions, publishers and other stakeholders together to recognise and explore challenges, and to build and maintain a close and constructive dialogue. The Coordination Group has five core objectives:
- Developing and interpreting the data and evidence base on the implementation of open access in priority areas
- Coordinating related research and activity being undertaken by stakeholders
- Commissioning research to fill gaps in the evidence
- Providing advice on policy and the direction of implementation of open access
- Providing advice on the coordination and development of open access infrastructure …”
“Cochrane is registered as a charity and is largely publicly funded; much of its data extraction and systematic review work is done by volunteers. However, Cochrane’s current policies allow only specific individuals with full library access to view and reuse data reports in their entirety. Cochrane has declined to allow data sharing for reuse through OpenTrials or the Trip Database library. However, data sharing is essential to transparency in research, the investigators wrote, and is associated with “increased citations…publications, and [data] reuse for new purposes.” In addition, improved access to existing data allows investigators to refine extraction processes and explore “new avenues of inquiry.” …”
“The progressive RCUK policy on open access has recently come under fire, particularly from humanities scholars, for favouring Gold OA over Green. For various reasons — and I won’t, for now, go into the question of which of these reasons are and aren’t sound — they favour an approach to open access where publishers keep final versions of their papers behind paywalls, but drafts are deposited in institutional repositories (IRs) and people who want to read the paper can have access to the drafts.
It’s appealing to think that this relatively lightweight way of solving the access problem can work. Unfortunately, I’m not convinced it can, for several reasons. I’ll discuss these below, not so much with the intention of persuading people that Gold is a better approach, but with the hope that those of you who are Green advocates have seen things that I’ve missed and you’ll be able to explain why it can work after all….”
“There are at least three radical aspects of Plan S: authors are being required to retain copyright and to publish under an open licence (preferably CC-BY); the funding of OA APCs (where applicable) will be standardised and capped across Europe (and I assume this means a per paper cap); and the ‘hybrid’ model is not compliant….
Of specific interest to the UK is the fact that our main research funder, UKRI, is included as one of the signatories. Earlier this year, UKRI announced a review of their OA policy and we are expecting that to start later this year or early next. However, they are now a member of this coalition and have signed up to Plan S. It would appear clear that, at the very least, UKRI is signalling an intended direction of travel….”