Re: On the Need to Take Both Roads to Open Access

From: Kathleen Shearer <>
Date: Sat, 13 Sep 2003 17:32:27 +0100

We have also discussed this option as one strategy for accumulating a
baseline of content in our repositories. However, it was assumed that
one would have to seek permission first from each author, and this could
become very time consuming...

Does anyone know whether author permission would be required for this?

It does seem like a good way to get some content into the repository in
the initial stages. The idea being that one could then showcase a
"working" repository to the faculty members when encouraging them to
begin self-archiving.


Kathleen Shearer
Research Associate
Canadian Association of Research Libraries

----- Original Message -----
From: Stevan Harnad
Sent: Friday, September 12, 2003 11:05 PM
Subject: Re: On the Need to Take Both Roads to Open Access Status: R

On Fri, 12 Sep 2003, [Identity Deleted] wrote:

> Stevan,
> [Identity Deleted], our electronic resources coordinator, was
inspired by
> your quote of 55% of journals allowing self-archiving to ask why we
> just go back and retrospectively add that 55% to a University
> [ ]
> I have been pushing [Ivy League University, identity deleted] to
> such an archive. I thought it was a great idea to get a collection
> content immediately. Do you know of other Universities that are
> this and if not, why not?

Thanks for your message.

(1) The 55% figure comes from the Romeo sample of 7000+ journals, of
which 55% already officially support author/institution
(Many more journals will agree if asked.)

(2) In most cases the support probably extends to the retrospective
literature as this is not a great source of potential revenue and many
more journals (e.g., Science) already support self-archiving after an
interval -- from 6 months to three years -- after the publication

(3) Although making a university's past research output openly
accessible is very valuable and desirable (and doing it is to be
strongly encouraged), making its *current* research output openly
accessible is even more valuable and desirable (and even more strongly
to be encouraged!).

(4) The 55% figure is actually an estimate of the *minimum* amount of
*current* research output that universities can already self-archive
immediately, without the need to make any further request of the
publisher, or any change in the copyright transfer of licensing

(5) The challenge with self-archiving (whether current or legacy
output) is not, and has never been, publishers or copyright.
will cooperate, in the interests of science and scholarship.

(6) The real challenge is establishing a systematic institutional
self-archiving policy that will ensure the speedy self-archiving of
research output. The library can help
especially by offering a proxy self-archiving service
but it is the university and its departments that need to strongly
encourage or even mandate self-archiving by its researchers
their policy backed up by the research funding agencies

But going after retrospective research is a good idea too. I hope
universities that have been implementing this will reply and share

Stevan Harnad

NOTE: A complete archive of the ongoing discussion of providing open
access to the peer-reviewed research literature online is available at
the American Scientist September Forum (98 & 99 & 00 & 01 & 02 & 03):

Discussion can be posted to:
Received on Sat Sep 13 2003 - 17:32:27 BST

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