Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Monday, June 18, 2007

Michael Geist on OA

Thanasis Priftis interviewed Michael Geist about OA for Re-Public (undated but apparently new)Excerpt:

T.P.: Your work puts emphasis on the open access principle, which is an extremely interesting concept radically changing the way we see science, education and knowledge. However, do you think that access to content is enough for the democratisation of knowledge?

M.G.: I donít think it is sufficient but it may well be a necessary condition. There are certainly additional concerns - connectivity, flexible copyright law, etc. are also essential, but access to content is important.

T.P.: The story is out: five leading European research institutions launched a petition that called on the European Commission to establish a new policy that would require all government-funded research to be made available to the public shortly after publication. Tell us a little bit more. How was this effort organised? After the initial success, how do you intend to continue?

M.G.: I believe this stems from several OA (open access) activists seeking to galvanize opinion on the issue. The fight will certainly continue Ė though here is some support and movement on the issue, we are still a long way from universal OA mandates for most major funding agencies worldwide. Moreover, many researchers and academics still do not give much thought to how they make their own work accessible.

T.P.: What do you expect to be the short and long term effects of this effort?

M.G.: Short term will be a growing awareness of the potential to increase the publicís access to knowledge by adopting more open approaches to publishing. Long term, the public will come to expect that such knowledge is readily available and we will facilitate the creation of a better informed, more knowledgeable society....