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Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP) Publishing has launched a hybrid OA journal, HFSP Journal: Frontiers of Interdisciplinary Research in the Life Sciences. From today's press release:
The HFSP Journal aims to foster communication between scientists publishing high quality, innovative interdisciplinary research at the interface between biology and the physical sciences....
The University of Rochester has received a grant from the US federal Institute of Museum and Library Services to improve web-based writing tools and automate the deposit of resulting theses, dissertations, and research articles in the author's institutional repository. From yesterday's announcement:
Google and Wikipedia have inspired MIT to launch a Center for Collective Intelligence. (Thanks to Andrea Foster.) From the Center's October 5 announcement:
Comment. So far, the OA connection is weak. But CCI already recognizes that OA information is the lifeblood of collective intelligence, and we can hope that it formalizes this recognition in concrete forms of support for OA and projects to put it to work.
Lawrence Solum, Do Academics Have an Ethical Obligation to Publish in Open Access Venues? Legal Theory Blog, October 13, 2006. A response to Susan Crawford's blog notes on Mike Carroll's recent talk at Cardozo Law School (blogged here yesterday). Excerpt:
Larry is right, but I think that there’s more to the story. Scholars aren’t going to give up the reputational benefits of publishing for prestige. An open access norm isn’t likely to stabilize, at least in law, unless both journal editors and authors somehow incorporate the prestige economy into the open publishing economy.
The Open Archives Initiative has launched a new project called Object Reuse and Exchange (ORE). From today's announcement:
Abeer Arafat of the Royal Scientific Society of Jordan has translated the Riyadh Declaration on Free Access to Scientific and Technological Information into English. (The translation was facilitated by Khaled Kahhaleh, also of the Royal Scientific Society of Jordan, and touched up by Stevan Harnad.)
I believe this is the first Arabic declaration in support of OA and hope it has a wide impact.
Péter Jacsó, Open access to scholarly full-text documents, Online Information Review, 30, 5 (2006). Only the abstract is free online, at least so far. Excerpt:
Stevan Harnad, Optimizing OA Self-Archiving Mandates: What? Where? When? Why? How? A technical report for the University of Southampton Department of Electronics and Computer Science, self-archived October 13, 2006.
Susan Crawford has blogged some notes on Mike Carroll's talk at Cardozo Law School yesterday. Mike is a law professor at Villanova Law School and a member of the board at Creative Commons. Excerpt:
Yesterday news broke that a new species of mouse had been discovered in Cyprus. Mark Stoeckle reports that 193 mainstream news media picked up the story --and that the original peer-reviewed article is only accessible to subscribers. His conclusion:
Limited access limits taxonomy....The press coverage of this article demonstrates discovery of new species is of wide public interest, and there are many persons who would want to read beyond the headlines. As it stands, readership is often limited to a small number of specialists, guaranteeing continuing obscurity for taxonomic science. Open access for new species descriptions could help increase visibility and willingness to fund taxonomic science.
Jürgen Lübeck, Open Access - The Road to Hell? Jürgen Lübeck, October 13, 2006. A detailed answer to Rafael Ball's critique of OA (blogged here July 5, 2006). Read it in German or in Google's English.
Klaus Graf has put together a good list of collections of OA Spanish literature.
Leslie Carr and seven co-authors, Repositories for Institutional Open Access: Mandated Deposit Policies, a preprint self-archived October 13, 2006.
Abstract: Only 15% of articles are currently being made Open Access (OA) through spontaneous self-archiving efforts by their authors. They average 25%-250% more citations in all 12 disciplines tested so far. Ninety-four percent of journals endorse immediate OA self-archiving. There is no evidence that self-archiving induces subscription cancellations. The “OA advantage” consists of: Early Advantage (early self-archiving produces both earlier and more citations), Usage Advantage (more downloads for OA articles, correlated with later citations), Competitive Advantage (relative citation advantage of OA over non-OA articles: disappears at 100% OA), Quality Advantage (OA advantage is higher, the higher the quality of the article) and Quality Bias (authors selectively self-archiving their higher quality articles – a non-causal component: disappears at 100% OA). We are currently comparing the OA advantage for mandated and spontaneous (self-selected) self-archiving. Deposit rates in Institutional Repositories (IRs) remain at 15% if unmandated, but climb toward 100% OA if mandated, confirming surveys that predicted 95% compliance. In the UK, 4 of the 8 research funding councils and the Wellcome Trust mandate self-archiving and it is being considered by the European Commission and the US federal FRPAA. There is no reason for universities to wait for the passage of the legislation. Five universities and two research institutions (including CERN) have already mandated it, with documented success. An Immediate-Deposit/Optional-Access Mandate covers all cases and moots all legal issues: metadata are immediately visible webwide and, where needed, access to the postprint can be set as Closed Access instead of OA throughout any embargo period. Software to support this approach (that allows the author to email individual copies of non-Open Access papers to individual requesters) has been created for both EPrints and DSpace repository platforms.
Michael Cross, The fight has only just begun, The Guardian, October 12, 2006. Excerpt:
Chemists Without Borders has posted the second draft of its Open Chemistry Position Statement (and Suggested Actions).
Stevan Harnad, CIHR Proposes 99.99% Optimal OA Self-Archiving Mandate, Open Access Archivangelism, October 12, 2006. Excerpt:
UW-Madison joins massive Google Book project, a press release from the University of Wisconsin, October 12, 2006. Excerpt:
Also see the news coverage.
Bernadette Gray-Little, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has added her signature to the SPARC list of U.S. university presidents and provosts endorsing open access to publicly-funded research and the Federal Research Public Access Act of 2006 (FRPAA). The tally is now up to 127.
Chuck Henry, Disciplines Converge on Need for Cyberinfrastructure, CLIR Issues, September/October 2006. Excerpt:
James Till and Joan Leishman, Be Openly Accessible or be Obscure? University of Toronto Bulletin, October 11, 2006 (scroll to p. 15). Excerpt:
The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) has written a Draft Policy on Access to CIHR-funded Research Outputs, October 10, 2006. Excerpt:
Comment. Kudos to the CIHR for this exemplary policy.
Adrian White, Electronic publishing and Acupuncture in Medicine, Acupuncture in Medicine, September 2006. Only this abstract is free online, at least so far:
Laura Smith, Bio-funders back the Open Access publishing, Information World Review, October 11, 2006. Excerpt:
David Weinberger has blogged some notes on a talk by Dan Burk at Harvard's Berkman Center on open-source science. Excerpt:
In the October 16 issue of US News and World Report, Alex Kingsbury and Lindsey Galloway look at free and affordable digital textbooks as alternatives to hyperinflated print textbooks. They include two OA textbook projects, Textbook Revolution and Freeload Press.
Update. Also see the story on Freeload Press in the October 12 Christian Science Monitor.
Stevan Harnad, Hypotheses Non Fingo, Open Access Archivangelism, October 10, 2006. Excerpt:
The Simon Fraser University Library has launched the OA Community Health Online Digital Archive Research Resource (CHODARR). (Thanks to Heather Morrison.) From the site:
The goal of CHODARR is to improve health and social welfare research and advocacy by providing academic and community-based health researchers and social justice advocates a resource to share and preserve share their research....CHODARR is a permanent, catalogued and publicly accessible online digital archive of research materials related to health and social welfare, with an emphasis on housing, gender, aboriginal issues, HIV and mental health. This project is an ongoing partnership amongst community groups and academic researchers, who aim to develop a sustainable, transportable community researcher training and public education program throughout British Columbia.
Penny Carnaby, National framework supporting local creation: New Zealand’s institutional repository story, a presentation at the IFLA General Conference (Seoul, August 20-24, 2006). (Thanks to Steve Hitchcock.) Excerpt:
Anna Winterbottom, Open Access: scientific publishing and the developing world, First Author, September 9, 2006. Excerpt:
Comment. For perspective, remember that the majority of OA journals charge no author-side fees at all and that fee-based OA journals are even rarer in the developing world than beyond it. For example, virtually all of the OA journals published in India are no-fee journals.
The EThOS (Electronic Theses Online Service) project has created an EThOS Toolkit to help UK institutions wanting to provide OA to their electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs). From the site:
Comment. This is an important front for the OA movement and I strongly support it. The toolkit wisely goes beyond technical and legal details to suggestions for changing the institutional culture.
The EU Joint Research Centre (JRC) has written text-mining software optimized for OA sources. The purpose is to help the International Atomic Energy Agency monitor news and research for clues that a country might be violating the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. From yesterday's announcement:
Comment. I'd like to see the EU make the software public and open the source code. I'm assuming it works with a separable database of cues and sources relevant to nuclear non-proliferation, which could remain classified. The software was developed at public expense, has general utility, and could serve another urgent public purpose: accelerating scientific research. It wouldn't be the only text-mining application around, but I'm assuming that the IAEA wouldn't have chosen it unless it had some strengths missing from other packages. The public gains when new tools and access policies make public research more useful than it already is --and OA benefits when new tools give authors and publishers an extra incentive to make their work OA.
Carl Kinbar, Open Access and the SBL [Society of Biblical Literature], SBL Forum, October 2006. Excerpt:
The presentations from the NSF Workshop on New Collaborative Relationships: The Role of Academic Libraries in the Digital Data Universe (Arlington, Virginia, September 26-27, 2006), are now online. (Thanks to Richard Akerman.)
Update. Also see the ARL Report on the workshop.
Stevan Harnad, Critique of EPS/RIN/RCUK/DTI "Evidence-Based Analysis of Data Concerning Scholarly Journal Publishing", Open Access Archivangelism, October 9, 2006. Excerpt:
Rice University and IBM are developing an open-standards architecture to integrate OA repositories with other open-source academic tools like courseware packages. From the press release (undated but apparently October 7, 2006):
Carter Dougherty, As books go online, publishers run for cover, International Herald Tribune, October 8, 2006. Excerpt:
Varada Rajakumar Ratnam, Tapping the e-word, The Hindu, Business Line, October 9, 2006. Excerpt:
Trudi Bellardo Hahn, Impacts of Mass Digitization Projects on Libraries and Information Policy, Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, October/November 2006. (Thanks to Charles W. Bailey, Jr.) Excerpt:
Susanne Bjørner, Google Library Project Expands to Spain, Information Today, October 9, 2006. Excerpt:
The time is right for open access, delegates hear, a press release from JISC. Excerpt:
Austria's Förderung der wissenschaftlichen Forschung (FWF, Fund for the Promotion of Scientific Research) has adopted an open access policy. (Thanks to Matt Cockerill.) The FWF is Austria's central, public funding agency for scientific research.
So far, the policy is only available in German; but until it's translated, see Google's English.
The FWF policy lies between a request and a mandate, like the policy of Germany's DFG. It asks [fordert] all FWF-funded researchers to make their publications OA either by publishing in an OA journal or by depositing copies in an OA repository (which may be institutional or disciplinary). FWF also asks its grantees not to give publishers exclusive rights and offers to pay the fees charged by fee-based OA journals.
It appears that the new policy was adopted on October 6, 2006.
Comment. Kudos to the FWF. If we count this policy in the mandate column, it not only enlarges the number of OA mandates adopted by public funding agencies worldwide, but enlarges the number adopted this month (four new mandates from the RCUK and one older mandate expanded by the Wellcome Trust).
Doug Lederman, Opening Up Online Learning, Inside Higher Ed, October 9, 2006. Excerpt:
[T]hree dozen academic publishers, providers of learning management software, and others have agreed on a common, open standard that will make it possible to move digital content into and out of widely divergent online education systems without expensive and time consuming reengineering. The agreement by the diverse group of publishers and software companies, who compete intensely with one another, is being heralded as an important breakthrough that could expand the array of digital content available to professors and students and make it easier for colleges to switch among makers of learning systems.
American Anthropological Association Takes a Step Towards Sanity: Kind Of, Afarensis, October 7, 2006. Excerpt:
PS: Just for the record: The AAA itself hasn't yet taken a step towards sanity. The recent endorsement of open access and FRPAA came from the AnthroSource Steering Committee, an arm of the AAA, and calls on the AAA to reconsider its opposition to FRPAA.
Kambiz Kamrani, AnthroSource Steering Committee dissents from the AAA and endorses FRPAA, Anthropology.net, October 7, 2006. Excerpt:
Monica McCormick, Filling Institutional Repositories by Serving the University’s Needs, a Master's thesis for the M.S. in L.S. degree, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, April, 2006. (Thanks to Allan Cho.) Excerpt:
This paper suggests that institutional repositories will more successfully challenge the current system of scholarly communication if they first address the needs of local stakeholders: not only the library, but also the university archives, the faculty, students, information technology department, university press, and the campus administration. After describing the contexts of IR emergence, the paper examines the vision for and current deployment of institutional repositories. Finally, it explores the needs of each stakeholder group in relation to digital material, and outlines how an IR might benefit each of them. The thesis is that institutional repositories will become a strong part of the campus infrastructure only if they solve problems for stakeholders beyond the library. Once that is accomplished, we may begin to see how IRs can influence the wider system of scholarly communications.