Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Saturday, May 05, 2007

U of Minnesota adopts the CIC author addendum

Yesterday I noted that the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign had adopted the Author Addendum drafted by the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC).

Today I can report that the University of Minnesota has done the same.  (Thanks to Access Denied.)  The May 3 vote in the Faculty Senate was unanimous.

I haven't yet found an official statement by the university, but I have found this recommendation to the Faculty Senate by the Senate Library Committee for the May 3 meeting:

The Senate Library Committee has reviewed the CIC Provostsí statement on Publishing Agreements and supports the principles it incorporates. The statement encourages authors to be thoughtful in selecting publishing outlets, recognizing potential restrictions that may fetter access to scholarship. The model publishing addendum and information about publisher policies will be made available by the University Libraries to assist authors in those choices.  The Committee recommends that the Senate support the CIC Provostsí statement.

Comment.  Kudos to all involved at Minnesota.  I have the same questions about the plans at Minnesota that I had yesterday about the plans at Illinois.  But even without answers, it's clear that the good news keeps getting better.  The more universities that adopt an author addendum, the better.  If just one university did so, then publishers might refuse to publish articles by its faculty.  But if many universities did so, publishers would quickly accommodate them. 

A little background:  An author addendum is a lawyer-written modification of a publisher's standard copyright transfer agreement, stapled to the original and signed by the author.  As a contract modification, publishers may accept or reject it.  There are many author addenda in circulation, the most important --in chronological order-- are by SPARC (May 2005), MIT (January 2006), Science Commons (June 2006), OhioLINK (August 2006), SURF-JISC (October 2006), and CIC (February 2007).