Contribute Your Thoughts

We're interested in your thoughts on scholarly communication issues. You can post your message in the comments section to this entry.

View comments here | Post your thoughts here: Comments (0)

February 19, 2013

Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR)

From the SPARC Advocacy News section, posted Feb 14, 2013:

The bipartisan Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR) was introduced in Congress on February 14, 2013. Co-sponsored in the Senate by Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) and in the House of Representatives by Reps. Mike Doyle (D-PA), Kevin Yoder (R-KS), and Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), FASTR will accelerate scientific discovery and fuel innovation by making articles reporting on publicly funded scientific research freely accessible online for anyone to read and build upon.

About the bill: The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act would require that US Government agencies with annual extramural research expenditures over $100 million make electronic manuscripts of peer-reviewed journal articles that stem from their research freely available on the Internet and would enable their productive reuse. For details, see SPARC's FAQ on the bill.

Why is it important to academe? This legislation will mean enhanced access to federally funded research articles for researchers and students at your institution, as well as expanded utility of those articles. Availability of federally funded research in open online archives also will expand the worldwide visibility of the research conducted at your institution, increase the impact of your investment in this research, and aid you in examining related work at other institutions that compete for Government grants and contracts.

It will also enable researchers on your campus to begin to use these digital articles in new and innovative ways, including applying new computational analysis, text mining and data mining tools and techniques that have the potential to revolutionize scientific research.

How you can support the bill. Take action today to let Congress know that you support the Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act. Find out how by visiting our Legislative Action Center on the Alliance for Taxpayer Access website.

Campus actions. You can also take action on your campus to raise awareness of the legislation, and help generate additional support. Consider:

*Sharing the text of proposed legislation with your colleagues
*Alerting your institution's Federal Relations Officer to the proposed legislation, and encouraging your institution to endorse the bill.
*Contact your campus newspaper; consider writing an article, editorial or OpEd supporting the proposed legislation.

Posted by scholcom at 1:35 PM | Comments (0) ? in the news

Start Dates for NIH Public Access Policy Compliance

Changes to Public Access Policy Compliance Efforts Apply to All Awards with Anticipated Start Dates on or after July 1, 2013

Notice Number: NOT-OD-13-042

Key Dates
Release Date: February 14, 2013

Related Notices

NOT-OD-13-035 NIH Requires Use of RPPR for All SNAP and Fellowship Progress Reports, and Expands RPPR Functionality

NOT-OD-12-160 Upcoming Changes to Public Access Policy Reporting Requirements and Related NIH Efforts to Enhance Compliance

Issued by
National Institutes of Health (NIH)


For non-competing continuation grant awards with a start date of July 1, 2013 or beyond:

1) NIH will delay processing of an award if publications arising from it are not in compliance with the NIH public access policy.

2) Investigators will need to use My NCBI to enter papers onto progress reports. Papers can be associated electronically using the RPPR, or included in the PHS 2590 using the My NCBI generated PDF report.

Please see NOT-OD-12-160 for more details.

Please direct all inquiries to:

Office of Extramural Research
National Institutes of Health
1 Center Drive, Room 144
Bethesda, MD 20892-0152

Posted by chewx002 at 8:23 AM | Comments (0) ? in the news ? policies

February 1, 2013

Max Planck Society and De Gruyter Sign Agreement for Open Access Publishing

From De Gruyter's January 24 press release:

The Max Planck Society and the academic publishing house De Gruyter have signed a groundbreaking agreement to cooperate in the publication of Open Access books. The agreement covers texts intended for publication by scholars at the more than 80 individual Max Planck institutes working around the world today. It encompass the full range of disciplines in which the Max Planck Society is active, including the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities, and applies to both monographs and anthologies.

"Our collaboration with De Gruyter will enable us to offer our scholars a unified platform - both from a legal and an organizational perspective - for publishing books in Open Access," explains Ralf Schimmer, Director of the Department of Scientific Information Provision at the Max Planck Digital Library. "In this way, we're responding to an increasing number of requests from the Max Planck institutes, and are extending the support we give for Open Access publishing from journal articles to the arena of books."

Posted by stemp003 at 2:09 PM | Comments (5) ? in the news

January 25, 2013

Mathematicians launch series of community-run, open-access journals

From an article by Richard Van Noorden in the January 17 issue of Nature weekly:

Mathematicians plan to launch a series of free open-access journals that will host their peer-reviewed articles on the preprint server arXiv. The project was publicly revealed yesterday in a blog post by Tim Gowers, a Fields Medal winner and mathematician at the University of Cambridge, UK.

The initiative, called the Episciences Project, hopes to show that researchers can organize the peer review and publication of their work at minimal cost, without involving commercial publishers.

"It's a global vision of how the research community should work: we want to offer an alternative to traditional mathematics journals," says Jean-Pierre Demailly, a mathematician at the University of Grenoble, France, who is a leader in the effort. Backed by funding from the French government, the initiative may launch as early as April, he says.


For the Episciences Project, the CCSD plans to create a publishing platform that will support online peer-reviewed journals. Each journal, or 'epijournal', would have its own editor and editorial board, and authors could submit their arXiv-posted papers to their journal of choice. The journal would then organize peer review, perhaps using workflow software provided by the CCSD. Peer-reviewed papers would be posted on arXiv alongside their un-reviewed versions. A central committee (led by Demailly) would manage new journal candidates and make recommendations on paper formatting, but each journal would be free to set its own policies (including whether to charge for publication).


Demailly says that he expects to adjust the concept with feedback from the mathematics community. "If people want larger reviews linked to papers, or the possibility of online comments and blogs, we can offer this with only minor changes to the platform," he says. At the moment, the model's success or failure hinges on buy-in from mathematicians -- but the involvement of Gowers and other prominent mathematicians, such as Terence Tao of the University of California, Los Angeles, may help to build support.

Posted by stemp003 at 12:26 PM | Comments (0) ? in the news

January 18, 2013

Canadian Institutes of Health Research Strengthens Open Access Policy

From the CIHR Open Access Policy:


Amendments were made to the CIHR Open Access Policy, formerly known as the Policy on Access to Research Outputs. As of January 1, 2013, CIHR-funded researchers will be required to make their peer-reviewed publications accessible at no cost within 12 months of publication - at the latest. While the revised Policy provides researchers with clear guidance on CIHR's minimum expectation, in the spirit of public benefits of research, CIHR continues to encourage researchers to make their publications accessible for free as soon as possible after publication. Compliance with the Open Access Policy will continue to be monitored through end of grant reporting.

Posted by stemp003 at 2:42 PM | Comments (0) ? in the news ? policies

January 11, 2013

Pharmacological Reviews Moves to Continuous Publication

From the January 10 post to the Liblicense discussion group by Richard Dodenhoff, Journals Director for the American Society for Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics:

The journal Pharmacological Reviews (ISSN 1521-0081) has moved to continuous publication: articles are being published in their final form as soon as they are ready instead of waiting for complete issues. This allows articles to be published up to three months sooner than in the past. Several articles in the January 2013 issue are already online. See

The January 2013 issue will be published in a small number of batches within the next two to three weeks. Future issues will close on or about the first business day of each calendar quarter (April 1, July 1, October 1).


Readers have the option of being notified when new articles are published and/or when an issue is complete. Pharmacological Reviews generally publishes 8 to 10 articles per issue. Articles may be published singularly or in small groups. The number of continuous publication alerts will average less than one per week.

Pharmacological Reviews articles will continue to be paginated sequentially, and each will be assigned to a volume and to a quarterly issue for clear citation. The journal is published as one volume per calendar year.

Posted by stemp003 at 1:41 PM | Comments (5)

January 4, 2013

2012 Growth in Open Access

From Heather Morrison at Simon Fraser University's School of Communication:

2012 was yet another awesome year for open access growth. To illustrate just how far we've come: a BASE search of over 2,400 repositories now searches over 40 million documents. The DOAJ article search is inching up to the 1 million article mark, demonstrating that the growth in gold OA is not just in OA journals, but more importantly, in articles published in open access journals.

The numbers:

Directory of Open Access Journals
8,519 journals
2012 growth: 1,147 journals (3 journals / day)
# articles searchable at article level: 955,720
2012 growth in searchable articles: 234,449 (642 articles / day)

Directory of Open Access Books
1,259 academic peer-reviewed books from 35 publishers
new in 2012

Electronic Journals Library
37,805 journals that can be read free of charge
2012 growth: 5,421 journals (15 journals / day)

Highwire Press Free Online Articles
2,151,420 free articles
2012 growth: 41,640 articles (114 articles / day)

2,253 repositories
2012 growth: 89 repositories (7 repositories / month)

Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR)
3,340 repositories
2012 growth: 730 repositories (2 repositories / day)

Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE)
40,506,905 documents
2012 growth: 6,908,293 documents (18,926 documents / day)

2,600,000 articles (from PMC site)
2012 growth: 300,000 articles (from PMC site - update schedule not
known so not sure about accuracy)
1,199 journals deposit all articles in PMC
2012 growth: 220 journals (.6 journals / day

809,849 e-prints
2012 growth: 83,886 e-prints (230 e-prints / day)

14,242 documents as of Dec. 11 - cannot find # of documents on new
site (E-LIS migrated to a new e-prints server in the past few days -
looks great!)

Social Sciences Research Network
372,772 full-text papers
2012 growth: 65,715 full-text papers (180 / day)

Open Access Mandate Policies (from Registry of Open Access Material
Archiving Policies)
353 open access policies (total)
2012 growth rate: 44 policies (4 policies / month)

Internet Archive
1,110,878 movies
110,448 concerts
1,474,756 recordings
3,781,142 texts
(new in 2012)

For more information, see:

Posted by stemp003 at 4:36 PM | Comments (7) ? in the news

December 14, 2012

Chronicle: "Putting Dissertation Online Isn't an Obstacle to Print Publication"

From the Chronicle of Higher Education, December 12 issue:

Are you a science graduate student worried that making your thesis or dissertation available online will hurt your chances of getting it published? Gail McMillan, director of the digital library and archives at Virginia Tech, has good news for you. In a recent survey of science-journal editors, 87 percent indicated they would consider articles drawn from openly accessible electronic theses and dissertations, or ETD's.

Ms. McMillan helped run the survey under the auspices of the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations, a group that promotes the use and preservation of ETD's. She presented the survey results here this week at the fall meeting of the Coalition for Networked Information.

The 2012 survey is a companion to one last year that polled journal editors in the social sciences, arts, and humanities. According to the 2011 results, more than 82 percent of the journal editors would consider manuscripts revised from openly accessible ETD's.


Many students and their faculty advisers, however, cling to the idea that publishers will balk at publishing work if it's already freely available online. Ms. McMillan has found that those fears cut across disciplinary lines. Decisions about whether to restrict access to electronic work tend to be driven by anecdote, she said, and faculty members tend to play it safe when dispensing career advice.

"I think faculty want to err on the side of caution," she said. "I wish they would look at the data."

November 30, 2012

NIH to step up enforcement of OA policy

From the National Institutes of Health's Office of Extramural Research, November 16 posting:

When we put the [open access] policy into place in 2008 it was an adjustment for all of us. Since that time, NIH has focused much of our attention on outreach. We've helped you understand your obligations and provided reminders when we found papers that were out of compliance. This strategy, along with the research community's shared commitment to making the results of NIH-supported research public, has resulted in a high level of compliance with the policy. But our work is not done as there are still publications -- and as a consequence, NIH awards -- that are not in compliance. Thus, as of spring 2013 at the earliest, we will begin to hold processing of non-competing continuation awards if publications arising from grant awards are not in compliance with the public access policy. Once publications are in compliance, awards will go forward. For more details, see NIH Guide notice NOT-OD-12-160.


We are giving funded organizations at least five months to prepare for our new process, and we hope you use this time to assure that publications are in compliance with the policy long before this change in process begins.

The challenge is that publication occurs throughout the year, and progress reporting occurs once a year. So I encourage principal investigators to start thinking about public access compliance when papers are planned. Discuss with your co-authors how the paper will be submitted to PubMed Central, and who will do so, along with all the other tasks of paper writing. The easiest thing to do, perhaps even today, is to take a couple of minutes to enter the NIH-supported papers you have published in the last year into My NCBI to ensure you meet the requirements of the policy regardless of when your non-competing continuation is due. This will help you avoid a last minute scramble that could delay your funding.

Posted by stemp003 at 2:15 PM | Comments (0) ? in the news

November 16, 2012

Study of open access journals using article processing charges

From a study by authors at Michigan State University's College of Human Medicine and the Hanken School of Economics in Helsinki, Finland:

Solomon DJ, Björk B-C. A study of open access journals using article processing charges. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 2012;63(8):1485-95.

Article processing charges (APCs) are a central mechanism for funding open access (OA) scholarly publishing. We studied the APCs charged and article volumes of journals that were listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals as charging APCs. These included 1,370 journals that published 100,697 articles in 2010. The average APC was $906 U.S. dollars (USD) calculated over journals and $904 USD calculated over articles. The price range varied between $8 and $3,900 USD, with the lowest prices charged by journals published in developing countries and the highest by journals with high-impact factors from major international publishers. Journals in biomedicine represent 59% of the sample and 58% of the total article volume. They also had the highest APCs of any discipline. Professionally published journals, both for profit and nonprofit, had substantially higher APCs than journals published by societies, universities, or scholars/researchers. These price estimates are lower than some previous studies of OA publishing and much lower than is generally charged by subscription publishers making individual articles OA in what are termed hybrid journals.

Posted by stemp003 at 3:39 PM | Comments (0)