Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Tuesday, August 31, 2004

OA could solve problem for Canadian dissertations

Mary Nersessian, PhDs see red over American rights, Globe and Mail, August 31, 2004. Excerpt: "Library and Archives Canada's current thesis-submission form is at odds with academic principles meant to uphold the free dissemination of ideas, some Canadian graduate students are arguing. As it stands now, students who wish to see their thesis published in a national, standardized way are required to submit the work, through Theses Canada (a division of Library and Archives), to the American company ProQuest, which then gets non-exclusive publishing rights. Some institutions, including the University of Toronto, even require such a submission before they will allow students to graduate....Dennis Pilon, who is completing his doctorate in political science at Toronto's York University, contends that his research should not be published to profit an American company....Meanwhile, there may be another way to resolve the entire issue. 'The way out of this,' says [Sharon] Reeves [manager of Theses Canada], 'is to go electronic.' In fact, Library and Archives Canada has initiated a pilot project with three universities (Saskatchewan, Waterloo and Laval) to submit theses through an in-house electronic program -- which would be immediately accessible, to anyone, for free."