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

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Fri, 3 Oct 2003 18:26:15 +0100

There will be an Open Access conference October 20-22 in Berlin. Below
is a URL for the conference, followed by the abstract of my own paper
(to be given in session 4.3):

    (organized by the Max Planck Society in association with ECHO)
                October 20 - 22, 2003, Berlin

My own paper will be entitled:

    On the Need to Support Both Open-Access Strategies:
    Open-Access Publishing (P) and Open-Access Self-Archiving (S)

    Stevan Harnad

    ABSTRACT: It has taken a very long time for the research community
    to at last awaken to the importance of, the need for, and the
    attainability of toll-free online access to the full text of all
    peer-reviewed research articles for all researchers ("open
    access"). There are two roads to open access: (P) Open-Access
    Publishing and (S) Open-Access Self-Archiving. It would be a great
    pity, and a great loss for open-access and research impact, if
    today's long-overdue open-access initiatives were now to be focused
    exclusively, or even primarily, on Open-Access Publishing (P), which
    may be the easier concept to understand, but is the slower, more
    indirect and more uncertain of the two means of attaining open access
    today. Open-access publishing requires 3 steps:

        (P1) creating or converting 23,500 open-access journals (there
        are only 500 open-access journals today, and 23,500 toll-access

        (P2) finding a means of covering open-access publication costs
        (varying from <$500 to >$1500 per article), and

        (P3) persuading the authors of each of the 2,500,000 refereed
        research articles published annually to publish them in these
        23,500 new open-access journals instead of in the 23,500
        established toll-access journals.

    Open-access self-archiving requires only one step:

        (S1) persuading the authors of each of the annual 2,500,000
        refereed research articles to self-archive them in addition to
        publishing them in the established 23,500 toll-access journals.

    As 55% of the established journals already support self-archiving
    (and many more will agree if asked),

    and as at least three times as many articles are open-access today
    because their authors have self-archived them than because they
    have been published in an open-access journal,

    it is undeniable that self-archiving is the faster, more direct,
    and more certain of the two means of attaining open-access
    today. Moreover, self-archiving is probably also the single most
    powerful means of hastening us all toward the era of universal
    open-access publishing! The optimal joint open-access strategy that
    the Berlin Declaration should accordingly support and promote is
    that all researchers should:

        (P) publish in an open-access journal today wherever a suitable
        open-access journal is available today;


        (S) wherever a suitable open-access journal is not available
        today, publish in a toll-access journal but also self-archive
        the article in your institutional open-access archive today.

    Fully support both open-access publishing (P) and open-access
    self-archiving (S).

Harnad, S. (2003) Electronic Preprints and Postprints. Encyclopedia of
Library and Information Science Marcel Dekker, Inc.

Harnad, S. (2003) Online Archives for Peer-Reviewed Journal
Publications. International Encyclopedia of Library and Information
Science. John Feather & Paul Sturges (eds). Routledge.

Harnad, S. (2003) Self-Archive Unto Others as Ye Would Have Them
Self-Archive Unto You.
The Australian Higher Education Supplement.

Harnad, S., Carr, L., Brody, T. & Oppenheim, C. (2003) Mandated online
RAE CVs Linked to University Eprint Archives:
Improving the UK Research Assessment Exercise whilst making it cheaper
and easier. Ariadne.

Harnad, S. (2003) Maximising Research Impact Through Self-Archiving.


Stevan Harnad
Chaire de Recherche du Canada
Centre de Neuroscience de la Cognition (CNC)
Universite du Quebec a Montreal
Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3C 3P8
tel: 1-514-987-3000 2461#
fax: 1-514-987-8952
Received on Fri Oct 03 2003 - 18:26:15 BST

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