Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

More from Australia's science minister on OA for publicly-funded research

Brendan O'Keefe and Bernard Lane, Scientists 'obliged' to share wisdom, The Australian Higher Education, January 23, 2008.  (Thanks to Colin Steele.)  Excerpt:

Senator Carr [said]..."I'd like to encourage debate about the most efficient ways to make public research more available."

One aspect could be more effective use of research repositories. The minister said universities would get money promised to them under the defunct research quality framework, "but I'll be talking (to them) about how we can enhance access (to research) through the repositories".

The sector welcomed Senator Carr's initiative.

The Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies said the minister's emphasis on the obligation of researchers might point towards a call for research results to be published free on the internet.

FASTS [Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies] president Ken Baldwin...said Senator Carr's comments came at a time of "quite interesting global shift". In the US last month, President George W. Bush made it law that all research results funded by the National Institutes of Health should be published free on the internet.

"That will have major implications throughout the world of research," Professor Baldwin said. "It's a real challenge to the scientific publishing industry."

Toss Gascoigne, the executive director of the Council for the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, said it was incumbent on scientists to "have a conversation with the people who fund them".

"The public would have a new appreciation of the value of some of this work, quite a lot of which is hidden under a bushel," Mr Gascoigne said....

PS:  Senator Kim Carr is also Australia's Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research.  For background, see his public comments last week on the open dissemination of science.