Statement release: ALLEA calls for Enhancement of Open Access to Scientific Publications
ALLEA has released a Statement on “Enhancement of Open Access to Scientific Publications in Europe”. The paper invites European authorities to take measures facilitating an Open Access model under consideration of the specificities of the various scientific disciplines. It stresses the need to further coordinate the steps towards an Open Access policy between the numerous institutions involved and to complement the short-term access by a system ensuring long-term preservation of research data and results.The statement addresses a key challenge for the scientific community since academic publishing is undergoing significant changes in the digital environment. It was prepared by the ALLEA Permanent Working Group on Intellectual Property Rights under the lead authorship of Professor Alain Strowel, Brussels.
The group is chaired by Professor Joseph Straus, representing the Union of German Academies of Sciences and Humanities, and has repeatedly issued recommendations regarding questions of intellectual property related to open access in previous statements such as in “Opportunities and Risks: the Digitisation of Books and the Google Book Settlement” (June 2011).
On different occasions in the past, ALLEA has been strongly engaged in the debates on Open Access publishing which determine the ways in which scientific information will be presented, disseminated and used in the future. At the ALLEA General Assembly 2012, a joint declaration “Open Science for the 21st century” was issued by ALLEA and the Vice President of the European Commission Neelie Kroes with a call to scientific communities and their institutions to make decisive steps towards open science. Neelie Kroes, Commissioner in charge of the Digital Agenda for Europe, addressed a special policy session on “The Digital Agenda and Access to Scientific Information” under the heading "Open e-Infrastructures for Open Science".
Policy session “The Digital Agenda and Access to Scientific Information”, ALLEA General Assembly 2012 in Rome. Left: Vice President of the European Commission Neelie Kroes; Right: ALLEA President Günter Stock
As a follow up, ALLEA President Günter Stock met the European Commission`s Vice President in Brussels in order to discuss more in detail the benefits of open science and open access (Please click here to watch a video documenting the meeting).
The release of the ALLEA Statement coincides with important events dedicated to the topic, including the Berlin Open Access conference on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the Berlin Declaration (19/20 November 2013), which will be opened with a speech by the ALLEA President and which brings together high level representatives from academia and policy from all over the world including European Commissioner Neelie Kroes and the Minister for Universities and Science in the UK David Willetts.
ALLEA´s position and possible future role will also be part of the discussions in the UNESCO regional consultations regarding Open Access (20/21 November 2013). The lead author of the ALLEA Statement, Professor Alain Strowel, was invited to contribute with a key note speech to the event.
For further information on the issue please visit the ALLEA website Access to scientific information. In order to learn more about the activities of the ALLEA Permanent Working Group on Intellectual Property Rights please click here.