“Since word of the potential executive order first spread late last year, OSTP has consistently declined to either confirm or deny such a policy is under review. Speaking to FYI this week, an OSTP official said the new series of stakeholder consultations was prompted by the series of letters commenting on “rumored efforts to increase public access.” The official noted the administration is holding meetings with representatives of academic institutions, libraries, commercial publishers, non-profit publishers, and research funders.
Asked if the administration ultimately plans to update the 2013 memorandum, the official replied, “Not necessarily, we continue to explore opportunities to increase public access, but we don’t necessarily have a particular mechanism [in mind], nor would we speak to any particular mechanism.” Characterizing the administration’s general stance toward open access, the official said, “This is taxpayer-funded research, and [the question is] how do we make that research more accessible so that we can increase the knowledge and innovation that comes from that research.”…
OSTP Director Kelvin Droegemeier has himself provided a few details on his views on open access in past interviews. Asked by the Times Higher Education last May about whether taxpayers should have immediate access to federally funded publications, he replied, “They maybe should — there’s all kinds of options out there being considered and discussed.”
Droegemeier has placed one firm bound on the administration’s approach, dismissing the Plan S initiative’s call for research funders to require that grantees publish in certain types of open access journals. “One of the things this government will not do is to tell researchers where they have to publish their papers. That is absolutely up to the scholar who’s doing the publication,” he told FYI in an interview last April….”