Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Stevan Harnad's proposed revisions to the Harvard policy

Stevan Harnad, Weaken the Harvard OA Mandate To Strengthen It, Open Access Archivangelism, February 14, 2008.  This excerpt is based on an email which slightly updates the blog post:

...Here are a few small but crucial changes in wording that will immunize the deposit requirement against any opt-outs from the copyright-retention requirement in Harvard's Open Access Mandate.  Note the re-ordering of the clauses, and the addition of the underscored passages.  (Other universities may also omit the two indented clauses preceded by asterisk ** if they wish):

Proposed revision: The Faculty of Arts and Sciences of Harvard University is committed to disseminating the fruits of its research and scholarship as widely as possible. In keeping with that commitment, the Faculty adopts the following policy:

[DEPOSIT MANDATE] To assist the University in providing Open Access to all scholarly articles published by its Faculty members, each Faculty member is required to provide, immediately upon acceptance for publication, an electronic copy of the final version of each article at no charge to the appropriate representative of the Provost’s Office in an appropriate format (such as PDF) specified by the Provost’s Office. This can be done either by depositing it directly in Harvard's Institutional Repository or by emailing it to the Provost’s Office to be deposited on the author's behalf.

**[COPYRIGHT RETENTION POLICY] Each Faculty member is also encouraged to grant to the President and Fellows of Harvard College permission to make available his or her scholarly articles and to exercise the copyright in those articles. In legal terms, the permission granted by each Faculty member is a nonexclusive, irrevocable, paid-up, worldwide license to exercise any and all rights under copyright relating to each of his or her scholarly articles, in any medium, and to authorize others to do the same, provided that the articles are not sold for a profit.

**[COPYRIGHT-RETENTION POLICY OPT-OUT CLAUSE] The copyright retention and licence-granting policy will apply to all scholarly articles written while the person is a member of the Faculty except for any articles completed before the adoption of this policy and any articles for which the Faculty member entered into an incompatible licensing or assignment agreement before the adoption of this policy. The Dean or the Dean’s designate will waive application of the policy for a particular article upon written request by a Faculty member explaining the need.

The Office of the Dean will be responsible for interpreting this policy, resolving disputes concerning its interpretation and application, and recommending changes to the Faculty from time to time. The policy will be reviewed after three years and a report presented to the Faculty.

PS:  For my comments on many (but not all) of these issues, see my post from February 12.