Welcome to the SPARC Open Access Newsletter, issue #146
June 2, 2010
by Peter Suber

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Unanimous faculty votes

One year ago today there were 12 known cases of unanimous faculty votes for institutional OA policies.

Today there are more than twice as many.  Here's a quick review and update.

The policies I've collected here are not all the university-based green OA policies.  Not by a long shot:  ROARMAP lists 90. 

I'm not including policies adopted by administrators rather than faculty, and I'm not including policies adopted by non-unanimous faculty votes, even when the tally was very high, such as the 98% supermajority at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.  Nor am I including policies limited to student theses and dissertations.

This is a special subset of green OA policies showing a very wide base of faculty support.  It's worth isolating because it provides especially strong evidence against the contention that faculty are indifferent or resistant to OA and "must be coerced" by mandates.  That contention always ignored the survey evidence, got too much mileage out of the word "mandate", and failed to take into account that mandates can be self-imposed by faculty, even self-imposed with enthusiasm and unanimity.

Surveys of researcher attitudes have consistently showed that an overwhelming majority do not resent OA mandates and would willingly comply with one from their funder or university.  See for example the high levels of support reported by Alma Swan (81%, 2005) and Kumiko Vézina (83%, 2008).

The unanimous faculty votes confirm these studies and take us further.  Faculty will not only accept green OA mandates and comply with them.  They will initiate efforts to draft and adopt them, and then vote for them.  At an increasing rate since early 2008, they will vote for them unanimously.

This special subset also jolts us to recognize the kind of consensus that is growing among faculty.  When was the last time the faculty on your campus voted unanimously for a substantive policy of any kind?  As unanimous votes become commonplace, we have to work to remember how rare and revealing they are.

Of the votes I've collected here, a good majority (16 out of 27, or 59%) adopted OA mandates.  Wide support for OA doesn't always coincide with wide support for the strongest kind of policy.  But more often than not, it actually does. 

The evidence provided by these unanimous faculty votes contrasts with other kinds of evidence showing less strong or less uniform faculty support.  Let me pull some of this evidence together and show how to fit it into one larger, consistent picture.

* First there is the evidence that faculty are still largely unaware of OA or misunderstand it.

For example, an April 2007 report commissioned by Research Information Network, and undertaken by Key Perspectives, found that:

Of the researchers we consulted, only about 1 in 10 were able to show that they fully understood what is meant by open access....Even if they are familiar with the concept, researchers are much less familiar with how to make their own research output available on an open access basis....Our survey shows a significant discrepancy between the proportion of librarians who say their institution has an open access institutional repository (52%) and the proportion of researchers who believe that their institution has such a repository (15%)...."

More than a year later Kumiko Vézina found that only 57% of surveyed faculty "knew the concept" of OA, and only 31% knew the concept of self-archiving.  Follow-up questions showed that this "knowledge" was closer to nodding acquaintance than clear understanding.  Only 14% knew whether their university had an OA repository.

It's not hard to reconcile this evidence with the unanimous faculty votes.  Most faculty are not familiar with their OA options, especially their green OA options, and still labor under misunderstandings. 

Campuses where faculty members vote unanimously for OA policies, especially for strong OA mandates, are not random exceptions to this current trend.  They are cultivated exceptions to this current trend.  More, they are gradually reversing the trend itself.  They are campuses where policy proponents have carefully educated their colleagues about the issues and patiently answered their questions, objections, and misunderstandings.

One lesson:  If your campus is considering an OA policy, be patient.  Let the education process take as long as it takes.  Make sure that objections and misunderstandings are answered before the vote, and make sure that the policy language doesn't invite objections and misunderstandings.

* Second there is evidence that when faculty pick a journal in which to publish their work, they rank OA comparatively far down on their list of criteria. 

The Ithaka Faculty Survey 2009 (April 2010) presented faculty with six possible criteria for selecting a journal in which to publish, and OA ranked sixth out of six.  In fact, Ithaka asked the same question in two previous surveys, and the rank of the OA criterion fell between 2003 and 2006.  (See pp. 25-26 and Figure 23.)

The top-ranked criterion (in 2003, 2006, and 2009) was that "The current issues of the journal are circulated widely, and are well read by scholars in your [field]".  Putting that criterion first and OA sixth was constant across fields, including fields (like physics and economics) with active preprint archiving cultures.

BTW, the faculty ranking for gold OA wasn't absolutely low; it was just low compared to other criteria.  40% of faculty said that gold OA was "very important". 

I don't dispute the Ithaka findings.  In fact, I've often argued myself that scholars will choose prestige in their field over OA, when they have to choose.  I've only tried to make clear that they rarely have to choose.

Again, it's not hard to reconcile this evidence with the evidence of the unanimous faculty votes.  The Ithaka finding is about gold OA, and the unanimous faculty votes are about green OA. 

Green OA policies allow faculty to submit their work to the journals of their choice.  One of the primary reasons why OA mandates focus on green rather than gold OA (or repositories rather than journals) is precisely to preserve this sort of academic freedom. 

When the high-profile journals in a field are TA, then a green OA policy allows faculty to have the best of both worlds:  prestige from the journal publishing the article and OA from the institutional repository.  It's not at all surprising that faculty, or faculty who understand their OA options, will take the best of both worlds when they can.  That explains both the preference for high-profile journals and the support for green OA.

Meantime, more and more OA journals are moving into the top cohort of prestige and impact in more and more fields, a second reason why authors rarely have to choose between prestige and OA.

The Ithaka study also looked at attitudes toward green OA, and found that less than 30% of faculty have already self-archived in an institutional or disciplinary repository.  The number goes up about 10% if we add in personal web pages.  Almost 80% plan to self-archive in the future, and more than 90% plan to do so if we count posting their work to personal web pages.  (See p. 27, Figure 27.)

If nothing else, these strands of evidence tell us that faculty attitudes toward OA are complex.  Attitudues toward gold OA are not the same as attitudes toward green OA.  Unanimous votes for green OA policies tell us little or nothing about support for gold OA; and conversely, attitudes toward gold OA tell us little or nothing about support for green OA.  Unanimous support for green OA after a patient process of education tells us little or nothing about support for green OA in the absence of that kind of education. 

* The unanimous faculty votes

Here are the 12 unanimous votes I identified a year ago today, chronological by vote.

1. Harvard University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences (February 12, 2008)

2. Macquarie University, University Senate and Council (April 27, 2008)

3. Harvard University, School of Law (May 7, 2008)

4. Stanford University, School of Education (June 10, 2008)

5. Boston University, University Faculty Council (February 11, 2009)

6. Oregon State University, Library Faculty (March 6, 2009)

7. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (March 18, 2009)

8. University of Calgary, Division of Library and Cultural Resources, Faculty Council (May 2009)

9. University of Pretoria, University Senate (May 2009)

10. University of Oregon, Library Faculty (May 7, 2009)

11. University of Oregon, Department of Romance Languages (May 14, 2009)

12. Gustavus Adolphus College, Library Faculty (May 14, 2009)

Here are the unanimous votes that took place or were publicly announced since then.

13.  University College London, Academic Board (October 2008) (announced June 3, 2009)

14. York University, librarians and archivists (October 1, 2009)

15. Universidad de Oriente (Venezuela), Academic Council (October, 2009)

16. Oberlin College (November 18, 2009)

17. University of Northern Colorado, Library Faculty (December 2, 2009)

18. Wake Forest University, Library faculty (February 1, 2010)

19. Oregon State University College of Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences (COAS) (February 12, 2010)

20. University of Virginia (February 24, 2010)

21. Rollins College Faculty of Arts and Sciences (February 25, 2010)

22. Duke University, Academic Council (March 18, 2010)

23. University of Puerto Rico School of Law (March 24, 2010)

24. San Jose State University, Faculty Senate (April 19, 2010)

It may seem that a unanimous faculty vote is easy to identify.  But here are three borderline cases omitted from the lists above.

25. University of Helsinki (May 26, 2008) (announced June 5, 2008)
The vote was unanimous by the "university management team".  I can't tell what sort of faculty representation was on the team or what sort of faculty consultation the team undertook.

26. Copenhagen Business School (June 2009)
The vote was by the Executive Management Team, consisting of the President, Dean of Research, Dean of Education and Director of Administrative Affairs, who voted after consulting with the Academic Council and Heads of Departments and Directors of Centers.

27.  Harvard Graduate School of Education (June 1, 2009)
In the vote, there were a few absentions but no dissents. 

Here are a few quick breakdowns of these 27 policies:

Six were from 2008, and 14 from 2009, more than doubling the pace from the previous year.  There have been seven to date in 2010.  If we continue at that pace (7 in 5 months, or 1.4 per month, or 16.8 in 12 months), then 2010 will surpass 2009.

The unanimous votes come from eight countries:  Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, South Africa, UK, USA (including Puerto Rico), and Venezuela.

Three are from liberal arts colleges (Gustavus Adolphus, Oberlin, and Rollins), the rest from research universities.

Ten of the policies apply to whole institutions (Boston, Duke, Helsinki, Macquarie, MIT, Oberlin, Pretoria, San Jose State, Universidad de Oriente, Virginia), and the rest apply to schools or departments within larger institutions.  Of the latter, seven apply to library faculty, two to faculties of arts and sciences, and one each to business schools, schools of education, and departments of romance languages.

Eleven of the votes were by the faculty senate or some similar body (Boston, Calgary, Copenhagen, Duke, Helsinki, Macquarie, Pretoria, San Jose State, Universidad de Oriente, University College London, Virginia) and the rest by the full faculty of the relevant institution, school, or department.

Sixteen of the policies are mandates (Copenhagen, Duke, Harvard Education, Harvard FAS, Harvard Law, Helsinki, Macquarie, MIT, Oberlin, Oregon Languages, Oregon Library, Pretoria, Rollins, Puerto Rico Law, Stanford Education, Wake Forest Library).  The rest encourage green OA without requiring it, create an opt-out for publishers (as opposed to an opt-out for faculty), or express the policy as an aspiration, pledge, or commitment.  In one case I don't have enough information to classify the policy (Universidad de Oriente).

* Postscript 1.  There can clearly be strong faculty support for OA even at institutions without unanimous votes and at institutions without policies.  Wherever faculty support OA, they can self-archive on their own, even while the wheels turn, sometimes slowly, for the creation of an effective institutional policy.  If you support green OA, work for a good policy at your institution, answer the questions and misunderstandings of your colleagues, self-archive without waiting for a policy, and encourage your colleagues to self-archive as well.

* Postscript 2.  Later today I'll open a version of this list of unanimous votes on the Open Access Directory (a wiki) for community updating.  If my list has any errors or omissions, please fix them directly on the wiki version. 



Here's what happened, or what I noticed, since the last issue of the newsletter, emphasizing action and policy over scholarship and opinion. 

+ Policies

* Denmark's Open Access Committee recommended that Denmark adopt a green OA mandate for publicly-funded research, that Danish universities adopt their own OA policies, and that Danish publishers offer suggestions on how the national transition to OA "could work for Danish publishers".  The committee reports directly to the Ministry of Science.

* Iceland's Science and Technology Council recommended a green OA mandate for Rannís, the country's largest research funding agency.  The Council reports directly to the Prime Minister.

* A Spanish conference on OA (Granada, May 12-14, 2010) issued the Alhambra Declaration, calling for green OA mandates at universities and funding agencies, and for supporting the transition to gold OA.

* A coalition of European non-profits and technology companies released Copyright for Creativity, "a declaration calling for a European copyright law truly adapted to the Internet age" and for copyright reforms to help citizens "develop and share educational and research materials...[and] facilitate new technology-based research and education...."

* The European Commission released a new communication, A Digital Agenda for Europe, asserting that "[k]nowledge transfer activities should be managed effectively and supported by suitable financial instruments and publicly funded research should be widely disseminated through Open Access publication of scientific data and papers."

* Europeana's new Public Domain Charter declares that "[d]igitisation of Public Domain content does not create new rights over it" and that "[w]hile Public-Private Partnerships are an important means of getting content digitised, the Charter recommends that deals are non-exclusive, for very limited time periods, and don’t take material out of the Public Domain."  The Charter complements but does not replace COMMUNIA's recent Public Domain Manifesto.

* Canada launched a Digital Economy Consultation containing a recommendation for OA to publicly-funded research.  Comments are welcome until July 9, 2010.

* Until July 9, users who register for Canada's Digital Economy Consultation can vote up Heather Morrison's proposal for Open Access to Canadian Research.  On May 31, the proposal was #1 in the category of Canada's Digital Content.

* The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) and the Forschungszentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (FZD) adopted OA policies.  The KIT policy encourages OA without requiring it and the FZD policy is not yet online.

* The San Jose State University Academic Senate unanimously adopted a resolution in support of green OA and the freedom of faculty to submit work to the journals of their choice. (This link points to the resolution; the vote took place on April 19.)

* The librarians and archivists at Queen's University adopted an OA policy encouraging OA.  (The Queen's policy seems to be based on the October 2009 York librarians' policy.)

* The Faculty Senate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln approved a resolution congratulating the faculty for depositing work in the IR and encouraging them to continue.  UNL does not mandate green OA, but its repository, with 40,000 deposits, is the second-largest in the US, after the U of Michigan's Deep Blue. 

* The University of North Texas completed the first draft of its OA policy.

* The International Society for Computational Biology called for feedback on its draft OA policy. It will accept comments until June 11.

* The Library Association of Alberta is now considering an OA policy.

* Subbiah Arunachalam wrote a group letter recommending a green OA mandate for the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR).  (Disclosure: I am one of the signatories.)
http://poynder.blogspot.com/2010/05/letter-to-cgiar-in-support-of-open.html http://poeticeconomics.blogspot.com/2010/05/food-for-all-letter-to-consultative.html

* The repository at the University of Liege grew by 30,000 deposits (from 10k to 40k) in the past year.  Rector Bernard Rentier attributes the rapid growth to the university's green OA mandate.  The IR reached 40k just as Liege started implementing its decision to use the IR as "the only official reference for the assessing of the publication activity of ULg members [for] academic promotions...."

* On behalf of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Author-Rights Language in Library Content Licenses, Ivy Anderson presented version 0.8 (April 2010) of the Author Rights Model Licensing Language, and some background on its evolution.

* The provosts and presidents of 27 major private and public research institutions signed an open letter in support of FRPAA. 

* The SPARC list of US university leaders publicly endorsing FRPAA has now grown to 118 with the signatures of the presidents or provosts of the Drew University, East Carolina University, Hamilton College, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the University of Kansas.

* The American COMPETES Act (HR 5116), passed in the House of Representatives on May 28, 2010.  Section 123 creates an Interagency Public Access Committee "to coordinate Federal science agency research and policies related to the dissemination...of the results of unclassified research, including digital data and peer-reviewed scholarly publications, supported wholly, or in part, by funding from the Federal science agencies...."

* The report from the House Science and Technology Committee on the COMPETES Act (above) elaborates on the new Interagency Public Access Committee at pp. 93 and 108-09.

* The University of Florida is launching an Open Access Publishing (UFOAP) Fund Pilot Project. It will become operational on July 1, 2010.

* The Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center launched the Sloan-Kettering Open Access Publication (SKOAP) Fund to pay fees at fee-based OA journals on behalf of MSKCC authors.  MSKCC is a member of the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity (COPE).

* The Ontario Genomics Institute (OGI) launched an OA journal fund of a new fund.  Unlike other funds, this one is limited to high-impact OA journals (impact factor of 8 or above, or named on a special OGI list) and requires authors to make the work green OA as well as gold OA.

+ Journals

* The International Journal of BioEngineering and Technology is a new peer-reviewed, no-fee OA journal.

* The Beilstein Journal of Nanotechnology is a new peer-reviewed, no-fee OA journal, published by the Beilstein-Institut.

* mBio is a new peer-reviewed OA journal from the American Society for Microbiology (ASM).

* Diabetic Foot & Ankle is a new peer-reviewed OA journal, published by Co-Action.

* PerspektivRäume is a new OA journal of history edited by students in the history department of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Universität Hannover.

* Nature Publishing Group (NPG) converted seven more of its TA journals to hybrid OA.  NPG now publishes 25 hybrid OA journals, and all 15 of the academic journals owned by NPG are hybrid OA.

* The Royal Society is developing a "transparent pricing policy" to lower the subscription price of its hybrid OA journals in proportion to author uptake of the OA option.  The new policy will take effect in 2012.

* Near Eastern Archaeology launched Dig-it-al, an OA supplement.

* BioMed Central launched an OA Japan Gateway.

* PLoS announced plans to launch a PLoS Hub for Biodiversity. 

* Sarah Stewart is looking for others to help brainstorm the launch an OA journal of midwifery. 

* Case Western Reserve University reinstated its Supporter Membership with BioMed Central.

* In a new deal funded by Poland's Ministry of Science and Higher Education, faculty and staff at all Polish academic institutions will pay no publication fees when publishing in Springer hybrid OA journals.

* Thieme Publishing Group joined CLOCKSS (Controlled Lots of Copies Keep Stuff Safe).  When Thieme content is no longer available from the publisher, it will become OA under CC licenses.

* Frontiers Media applied for an international patent on its form of online, interactive peer review for OA journals. 

+ Repositories and databases

* Johnson County Community College (JCCC) in Overland Park, Kansas, launched ScholarSpace @ JCCC, an institutional repository.

* MédiHal is new repository for OA scientific images.  Some are OA immediately and some after an author-stipulated embargo period. 

* WGBH Boston relaunched Open Vault with the release of its OA Vietnam Collection.

* DSpace launched the DSpace Registry, "not just to identify which institutions used DSpace, but also cultivate a resource with some basic information about those repositories to help facilitate connections between users."

* Student research is now available from the Southern New Hampshire University institutional repository.

* Southern New Hampshire University spent the first two years of a three year grant depositing student work in its IR, and will now turn to the deposit of faculty publications.  

* The German SOLIS portal (Social Science Literature Information System) converted to OA.

* The American Sociological Association launched Trails, a repository for OER in the field of sociology.  But it's not OA.   Even members of the association must pay for access.

+ Data

* The US National Science Foundation (NSF) announced that "on or around October 2010" new grantees will be required submit a data management and sharing plan.  This is the first in a series of steps to insure OA for data arising from publicly-funded research.

* Molecular & Cellular Proteomics announced that it will require authors to deposit raw mass spectrometer data in an OA repository at the time of publication.

* An online petition calls on "all authors of new manuscripts describing cryoEM particle reconstruction" to make their data open through the Electron Microscopy Data Bank.

* BioLit is a new initiative integrating OA literature in PubMed Central with open data from the RCSB Protein Data Bank.

* Dutch assyriologist Wilfred van Soldt will provide OA to the data from his archaeological dig now in progress near Satu Qala in North Iraq.

* GlaxoSmithKline provided OA to its Tres Cantos Antimalarial TCAMS dataset by depositing it in ChEMBL's Neglected Tropical Disease repository.  GSK used CC-Zero to assign the data to the public domain.  "The dataset contains the structures and screening data for over 13,500 compounds confirmed to inhibit parasite growth...."

* MIT joined GlaxoSmithKline and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals in donating patents to the Pool for Open Innovation against Neglected Tropical Diseases.  It's the first academic institution so far to do so.  An op-ed in the MIT paper called in the institution to go further.

* The Open Knowledge Foundation called for input on its plan to launch a series of gamelike "Data Hunt" events to identify open datasets around the world. 

* The Technical Advisory Group for the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) called for public comments on a plan to open data on international development.

* The World Meteorological Organization is thinking about launching an OA database of global temperature data.

+ Books

* The libraries at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln are creating an OA imprint for publishing original scholarly monographs.

* Phase 2 of California's Open Textbook Initiative found that 8 of 10 reviewed, CC-licensed OA textbooks met 100% of the state's standards for use in public schools.  30 OA textbooks have now been approved for use in California schools. 

* Google, the University of California libraries, and the UC San Diego Libraries announced that 100,000 volumes from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography Library are now digitized and "publically accessible"  The Scripps collection is the world's largest oceanography library.

* Most of the one million books Google is digitizing from the University of Minnesota libraries, and five million of the seven million books Google is digitizing from the University of Michigan libraries are under copyright and cannot be viewed until some version of the Google Book Settlement is approved.  

* The Harvard Library currently allows Google to digitize only its public-domain works, but is considering a plan to allow Google to digitize its copyrighted books as well.

* All the publications of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) are now digitized and downloadable through Google Book Search.

* The Tunisian National Library started making digitized books in French and Arabic downloadable to mobile devices.  

* The Internet Archive is running a book drive to enlarge their OA collection.  If you mail IA a print book, it will scan it and add it to the collection.

* The Internet Archive is converting more than one million digitized books to the DAISY talking book format, in order to serve blind, dyslexic, and print-impaired readers.  Access to copyrighted books in the program will be open only to readers who register with the Library of Congress's National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS).

* Pratham Books expanded from OA children's books to OA audio children's books under CC licenses, especially for blind children. 

* The New York Public Library started depositing its digitized books in the HathiTrust.

* The HathiTrust allows the authors of copyrighted book on deposit in Hathi to request OA for their works.

* Three databases --the H.W. Wilson Essay & General Literature Retrospective, Short Story Index Retrospective, and Book Review Digest Retrospective databases-- began linking from their content to full-text, public-domain books in the HathiTrust.

* ebrary launched a pilot program allowing gratis OA for 20,000+ digitized books to public high schools.

* John Mark Ockerbloom has improved subject browsing at The Online Books Page. 

* OA textbook publisher Flat World Knowledge launched a new adoption process for schools which meets the textbook-adoption regulations in the 2008 Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA).

* The English-language Wikipedia and PediaPress are working together to allow readers users to create and publish custom books built from Wikipedia articles.

* Walt Crawford made an ePub version of his OA book, _Open Access and Libraries: Essays from Cites & Insights, 2001-2009_.

* Stian Håklev is trying to find out what happened to the Universal Library, whose web site hasn't been updated since 2007.

+ Studies and surveys

* Ken Masters found an online forum in which participants illicitly shared 491 access codes for TA journal databases from 248 institutions in 40 countries.

* Rufus Pollock calculated that if the term of copyright had never been extended beyond the original term of 14 years, plus one 14 year renewal, then "52% of the books available today would in the public domain compared to an actual level of 19%...."

* Karolina Lindh and Mikael Graffner surveyed Nordic journals using Open Journal Systems (OJS).  Of the 24 responding, 11 used CC licenses (none of them CC-BY).  Two didn't allow self-archiving and four had unclear policies on self-archiving. 

+ Software and tools

* Open-Access-Fachrepositorien (OAFR) is a new project funded by the DFG to stream metadata from institutional repositories to appropriate disciplinary or subject repositories. Launched last month and
ending in March 2012, the project will work with German subject repositories in Art History, Economics, Education, and Psychology.

* Stuart Lewis upgraded his EasyDeposit SWORD client to allow deposit to multiple repositories at once.

* The Rutgers University Libraries launched OpenETD, open-source web-based software for submitting, approving, and distributing electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs).
* The Microsoft Biology Foundation plans to create an open-source platform on which researchers can build their own custom applications.  The platform will offer "a range of algorithms for manipulating DNA, RNA, and protein sequences, and a set of connectors to publicly available resources on the Web" in order to free researchers from the need to build those basic features into their own applications.

* The Open-Access-Netzwerk (OAN) integrated its search service, OAN-Suche, into open-access.net.

* Google launched email alerts for Google Scholar.

* Michael Lissner launched CourtListener.com, a free real-time alert system for US judicial opinions.

* Akaza Research launched the OpenClinica Case Report Form Library, a free web service allowing users of the open-source OpenClinica to "find, share, and re-use clinical trial case report forms".

* The Open Knowledge Foundation released CKAN (Comprehensive Knowledge Archive Network) version 1.0.

* The Open Knowledge Foundation gave us a preview of Bibliographica, its new open-source to gather and share semantically rich bibliographic information.

* The Freie Universität Berlin and Simon Fraser University signed an agreement to work together on the further development of Open Journal Systems.

* The Public Knowledge Project released Open Harvester Systems 2.3.0.

* DuraSpace announced the release of DSpace version 1.6.1.

* The organizers of Open Repositories 2010 (Madrid, July 6-9, 2010) announced the Developer Challenge for the meeting.  "The Challenge is: Create a functioning repository user-interface, presenting a single metadata record which includes as many automatically created, useful links to related external content as possible...."

+ Awards and milestones

* BioMed Central, Microsoft Research, and the Panton Principles introduced the Open Data Award, which "celebrates researchers who have published in any of [BMC's] 207 journals during 2009 and have demonstrated leadership in the sharing, standardization, publication, or re-use of biomedical research data...."

* The University of Hamburg Informatics Student Council gave its Open Access Award <http://goo.gl/39Q8> to the university's Informatics Library for launching and maintaining INFDok <http://goo.gl/6AYj>, the department's OA repository.

* The Directory of Open Access Journals passed the milestone of listing 5,000 peer-reviewed OA journals.  It also searches more than 2,000 journals searchable at the article level, and will soon index more than 400,000 articles.

* In April, RePEc passed the milestone of indexing 900,000 works, of which 750,000 are online.  It now also covers 500,000 abstracts, 24,000 registered authors, and 3,000 online books.

* According to the Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations (NDLTD), "there are now over one million readily available electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) online worldwide...."

* PubMed Central turned 10 years old.

+ Other

* Creative Commons launched a new Catalyst Grants program to award that will "fund up to $100,000 (via grants ranging from $1,000-$10,000) to provide seed funding to projects around the world devoted to increasing access and openness...." Yesterday it launched a one-month campaign to raise the funds needed for the grants.

* The OA Working Group of the Schwerpunktinitiative "Digitale Information" der Allianz der deutschen Wissenschaftsorganisationen released a "Legal Guide for online delivery of older publications".

* The Conseil interuniversitaire de la Communauté française (CIUF) published a book-length guide to the legal aspects of scientific publishing, including OA.

* The conference on Open Access to Science Information: Policies for the development of OA in Southern Europe (Granada, May 12-14, 2010) produced a series of reports on the state of OA in France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and Turkey.

* The EMC Corporation gave a series of grants to the Finca Vigia Foundation to fund OA for historical and cultural artifacts in China, India, South Africa, Poland, Canada and the United States.

* The Open Knowledge Foundation launched a branch in Germany.

* The Open Knowledge Definition was translated into Italian.

* A consortium of British institutions launched a digitized, OA collection of Jane Austen's fiction manuscripts. 

* BMGI launched four new OA communities devoted to Businesses, Governments, Healthcare, and Higher Education.

* Wikipedia launched an FAQ for librarians.

* The Allen Institute for Brain Science launched its OA map of gene expression in the human brain.  This is the fourth dataset in the OA Allen Human Brain Atlas.

* The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) added thousands new documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to its OA collection.

* A report from the Computer & Communications Industry Association found that "[i]n 2007, fair use industries generated revenue of $4.7 trillion, a 36 percent increase over 2002 revenue of $3.4 trillion....Employment in industries benefiting from fair use increased from 16.9 million in 2002 to 17.5 million in 2007. About one out of every eight workers in the United States is employed in an industry that benefits from the protection afforded by fair use...."

* Facultas, a web site on sustainable development, signed the Budapest Open Access Initiative.

* Barbara Kirsop called for stories on how OA has advanced your work, your career, or your organization, for use in in Open Access Week (October 18-24, 2010).

* Salil Vadhan, a Professor of Computer Science and Applied Mathematics at Harvard, is running for the ACM Council on a platform calling for OA to ACM publications.

* President Obama announced plans to name Harold Varmus the next director of the US National Cancer Institute.

* James Murdoch, heir to the Rupert Murdoch news empire, criticized the British Library's plan to provide OA to its archive of historical newspapers.  Murdoch complained that the plan is bad for business.


Coming this month

Here are some important OA-related events coming up in June.

* June 11, 2010.  Deadline for submitting comments on the International Society for Computational Biology's draft OA policy.

* OA-related conferences in June 2010

* Other OA-related conferences


This is the SPARC Open Access Newsletter (ISSN 1546-7821), written by Peter Suber and published by SPARC.  The views I express in this newsletter are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of SPARC or other sponsors.

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