Centring Our Values: Open Access for Aotearoa

“Key Recommendations Develop a National Strategy • National Library, CONZUL, and LIANZA should work together collaboratively to lead the development of a national level strategy. • Each University and Crown Research Institute should appoint a senior leader who can manage strategy development and local coordination, while liaising with the wider research community. • M?ori scientists, scholars, and researchers need to be specifically invited into this conversation and supported to participate. National Library, the Universities, and Crown Research Institutes should work to create the conditions needed for self-determination and an equitable outcome. Fill the Knowledge Gaps New Zealand has critical gaps in its knowledge around open access, scholarly publishing, and open data. To create good policies and move forward with this transformation, more research and more funding to conduct that research is needed. There is room for multiple robust research projects to help understand the needs of researchers, their current behaviors, and what interventions make the most sense in New Zealand. Centre Care • Work with the Tertiary Education Union to reform the Performance Based Research Funding system to support well-being and disentangle from proprietary non-transparent metrics. Refocus on traditional peer review and innovative ways of measuring excellence. • Fund and support education for librarians, academics, and administrators to develop a deeper understanding of scholarly communication and open access issues. • Support public and university community focused education campaigns to engage a wide range of people in open access issues and invite them into the conversation. Strengthen Open Access Infrastructure Transforming our scholarly communications system requires building both policy and technological infrastructure. To create a robust system that will support the kind of transformative change needed, we should prioritise developing this infrastructure as part of a deep engagement process with researchers, scholars, and scientists. • New Zealand universities should coordinate with our Australian counterparts and work to develop a regional response to Plan S. • Open Access policies across New Zealand universities and Crown Research Institutes should be harmonised to strengthen our national negotiating position – but, this process should be based on robust engagement with academics across disciplines and with the needs of M?ori and other marginalised scholars at the forefront. • Increase existing investment in university repositories to ensure that ‘green’ open access remains a robust path. • Expand the existing institutional repository system to Crown Research Institutes and others. • Develop a policy framework focused on carbon footprinting and monitoring to ensure that the system is as close to zero carbon as possible….”

How paywalls are poisoning public-interest research | The Spinoff

“Today, 51% of our New Zealand-based university research is made available to everyone – either through a university repository or by being published in a journal committed to using Creative Commons or other open licensing.

Which left a small group of highly profitable publishers in want of a business model. Enter the Performance Based Research Fund and international competition for university rankings.

When publishers with 40% profit margins start rebranding themselves as “information analytics” companies, it’s a good idea to take a close look at what they’re up to.

Let’s step back to 1955….”

What happens when books enter the public domain? Testing copyright’s underuse hypothesis across Australia, New Zealand, the United States and Canada by Rebecca Giblin :: SSRN

Abstract:  The United States (‘US’) extended most copyright terms by 20 years in 1998, and has since exported that extension via ‘free trade’ agreements to countries including Australia and Canada. A key justification for the longer term was the claim that exclusive rights are necessary to encourage publishers to invest in making older works available — and that, unless such rights were granted, they would go underused. This study empirically tests this ‘underuse hypothesis’ by investigating the relative availability of ebooks to public libraries across Australia, New Zealand, the US and Canada. We find that books are actually less available where they are under copyright than where they are in the public domain, and that commercial publishers seem undeterred from investing in works even where others are competing to supply the same titles. We also find that exclusive rights do not appear to trigger investment in works that have low commercial demand, with books from 59% of the ‘culturally valuable’ authors we sampled unavailable in any jurisdiction, regardless of copyright status. This provides new evidence of how even the shortest copyright terms can outlast works’ commercial value, even where cultural value remains. Further, we find that works are priced much higher where they are under copyright than where they in the public domain, and these differences typically far exceed what would be paid to authors or their heirs. Thus, one effect of extending copyrights from life + 50 to life + 70 is that libraries are obliged to pay higher prices in exchange for worse access.

This is the first published study to test the underuse hypothesis outside the US, and the first to analyse comparative availability of identical works across jurisdictions where their copyright status differs. It adds to the evidence that the underuse hypothesis is not borne out by real world practice. Nonetheless, countries are still being obliged to enact extended terms as a cost of trade access. We argue that such nations should explore alternative ways of dividing up those rights to better achieve copyright’s fundamental aims of rewarding authors and promoting widespread access to knowledge and culture.

Repository requirements a deal-breaker for Plan S Down Under | Times Higher Education (THE)

Research funding agencies in Australia and New Zealand will not be able to support Europe’s Plan S unless rules around repositories are watered down, according to open access advocates in both countries.

A joint submission says that repository provisions in the Plan S implementation strategy are overly prescriptive and would be cripplingly expensive – and in some cases technically impossible – to implement….”

Australian funders urged to join Plan S open access drive | Times Higher Education (THE)

:Australian and New Zealand research funders are under growing pressure to join Plan S, the European-led push to require academics to make publicly funded research freely accessible at the point of publication.

The initiative is due to be implemented at the start of next year by the 13 European national research funders that have backed it so far, alongside the European Commission and three charitable funders, including the Wellcome Trust and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

However, the project’s backers acknowledge that, to achieve the “big flip” towards open access, they need to build a global coalition, and efforts have been made to persuade North American, Asian and African funders to sign up….”

APO | Analysis and Policy Observatory

“Analysis & Policy Observatory (APO) is an award-winning, open access knowledge hub and information service providing easy access to policy and practice research and resources. 

APO makes policy research visible, discoverable and usable. 

Established in 2002 at Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, APO is a not-for-profit collaborative knowledge infrastructure and web platform working with partners from universities and organisations across Australia, New Zealand and beyond.”

NZGOAL (New Zealand Government Open Access and Licensing) framework | ICT.govt.nz

“NZGOAL is guidance for agencies to follow when releasing copyright works and non-copyright material for re-use by others.

It aims to standardise the licensing of government copyright works for re-use using Creative Commons licences and recommends statements for non-copyright material….”

Big Deal journal bundles: price information from New Zealand | Filling a much-needed gap

“In 2014 Timothy Gowers and others used Freedom of Information laws to extract the relevant price information from UK universities. See here for more detailed information. Earlier (2009), less extensive, work in the USA  had also been done by Ted Bergstrom and others. Inspired by this, I tried the same thing in New Zealand (for 7 of the 8 universities – representing around 8400 academic/research staff and 130000 students, so far (Lincoln University, very much smaller than the others, was omitted owing to an oversight). Whereas Gowers was able to obtain the requested information within a few weeks, it has taken me 3.5 years. In both countries universities originally refused to release the information. However, in the UK there is an automatic right of review of such decisions, undertaken by an academic. In NZ, no such right exists….”

Private health funds accused of misusing patient data for commercial gain | afr.com

“The inquiry, for which submissions close on July 29, is examining the benefits and costs of data being shared more widely between public sector agencies, private sector organisations, the research sector, academics and the community…. 

In a submission by Australian Dental Association (ADA) president Dr Rick Olive, the peak body said the way some private health insurers were already behaving should be a warning on the perils of data sharing….

Fintech player Tyro Payments meanwhile called for the right to see, use and share data to be mandated in a clearer way, saying existing rights under the Privacy Act of 1988 were effectively neutered in practice.

Tyro said data sharing would see consumers of financial services “benefit from vastly broader product choice and competitive terms”.

Meanwhile, banks that open access to data and create external application programming interfaces could “benefit because it would enable them to become more of a ‘platform’ for other services”. …”