Großbritannien setzt auf Open Access

Mit der Verabschiedung der „Innovation and Research Strategy for Growth“ (PDF) spricht sich die britische Regierung für eine deutliche Förderung von Open Access aus. In dem Kapitel „Expanded access to Research Publication and Data“ (S. 76) der Innovationsstrategie heißt es:

„The Government, in line with our overarching commitment to transparency and open data, is committed to ensuring that publicly-funded research should be accessible free of charge. Free and open access to taxpayer-funded research offers significant social and economic benefits by spreading knowledge, raising the prestige of UK research and encouraging technology transfer.“

Von den Research Councils geförderte Wissenschaftlerinnen und Wissenschaftler sollen verpflichtet werden ihre Publikationen auf Open-Access-Repositorien zugänglich zu machen.

Wissenschaftsminister David Willetts erläutert den Schritt im Guardian:

„We set out very clearly in the document today our commitment to open access. We want to move to open access, but in a way that ensures that peer review and publishing continues as a function. It needs to be paid for somehow. One of the clear options is to shift to a system from which university libraries pay for journals to one in which the academics pay to publish. But then you need to shift the funding so that the academics could afford to pay to publish.“

Ein weiteres Schwerpunktehema der Innovationsstrategie ist Open Data. Hier wird u.a. die Einrichtung eines Open Data Institute (ODI) angekündigt (S. 3-4) :

„We have commissioned independent groups of academics and publishers to review the availability of published research, and to develop action plans for making this freely available. We will also create an Open Data Institute, which will develop semantic web technologies for using data more effectively, and will advise the public sector and business as to how best to use these and manage their data so it can be exploited for economic and social benefits.“

Fred Friend vom University College London kommentiert die Entwicklung auf der JISC-Repositories-Liste:

„For those of us who witnessed the negative reaction of the previous UK Government to the 2004 Parliamentary Enquiry, these words are wonderful to read, and a tribute to the work carried out since 2004 to bring home to Government the potential benefits of OA to research and education communities and to the taxpayer.“

An dieser wegweisenden Entwicklung werden sich zukünftige Open-Access-Strategien in Europa messen lassen müssen.