Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

More on the proposed Harvard OA policy

Johannah S. Cornblatt and Samuel P. Jacobs, Faculty Meetings Stay Off the Air, Harvard Crimson, October 17, 2007.  This article covers several topics aired at a recent Harvard faculty meeting.  This excerpt is all that it has to say about the proposed OA policy:

[The Harvard Faculty of Arts of Sciences] discussed ways to combat the skyrocketing prices of scholarly journals in order to increase access to their ideas.

A committee spearheaded by Provost Steven E. Hyman proposed a set of measures to promote free and open access to scholarly articles.

“It gives the faculty the opportunity to democratize knowledge, much in the spirit of President Faust’s inaugural address,” said Harvard’s new University Library chief, Robert C. Darnton ’60.

According to Darnton, a scholar of the history of the book, prices for some journals have increased to tens of thousands of dollars, altering libraries’ purchasing habits and suppressing the demand for monographs and other writing.

Some professors worried the University’s open-access policy would put journals out of business, limiting outlets for publication.

“We might be shooting ourselves and our young colleagues in the foot,” Professor of Anthropology and of African and African American Studies J. Lorand Matory ’82 said....

PS:  For more background on this policy, see the Crimson story from September 27 (or my blog excerpt), and the Crimson editorial from October 2 (or my blog excerpt).