Re: UK Select Committee Inquiry into Scientific Publication

From: Terry ,Mr Robert <r.Terry_at_WELLCOME.AC.UK>
Date: Wed, 14 Jul 2004 09:56:49 +0100

The comments posted previously about the Government's obligation regarding the imminent House of Commons report on scientific publishing are not quite correct and I have just confirmed this with the Clerk of the Committee. The Government is obliged to reply, usually within 2 months, although because of the recess the expectation is that this will be a longer period in the case of scientific publications. The Government are not obliged to DO anything about the recommendations, although the Committee may choose to follow up the Government's response with further questions, evidence sessions and debates in the House.

This is the case for all select committee reports, in both the Lords and the Commons.


Robert Terry
Senior Policy Adviser
The Wellcome Trust
Telephone: +44 (0)20 7611 7303
Mobile: 07710 063205
Fax: +44 (0)20 7611 0740

The Wellcome Trust is a registered charity, no. 210183.
Its sole Trustee is The Wellcome Trust Limited, a company
registered in England, no. 2711000, whose registered office
is 183 Euston Road, London NW1 2BE.

-----Original Message-----
From: American Scientist Open Access Forum
Behalf Of Charles Oppenheim
Sent: 13 July 2004 16:19
Subject: Re: UK Select Committee Inquiry into Scientific Publication

Yes, it is worth saying that there are two types of Select Committees -
those of the House of Lords and those of the House of Commons. For some
obscure historical reason, the UK Government MUST issue a response to every
Lords Select C'tee Report, but is not obliged to agree with its
recommendations. In contrast, the Government is not even obliged to respond
to a House of Commons Select Committee Report, let alone agree to anything
it recommends. So the outcome of this House of Commons Report may well be
an almighty silence from the UK Government - and indeed, that is what I
expect will happen, as the issues raised are not high on the UK Government's
agenda. But the Report will nonetheless make interesting reading, and will
provide ammunition for anyone who cares to make use of selected sentences
from it!


Professor Charles Oppenheim
Department of Information Science
Loughborough University
Leics LE11 3TU
(fax) 01509-223053
----- Original Message -----
From: "Barry Mahon" <barry.mahon_at_IOL.IE>
Sent: Tuesday, July 13, 2004 2:52 PM
Subject: Re: UK Select Committee Inquiry into Scientific Publication

On Mon, 12 Jul 2004 13:30:08 +0100, Charles Oppenheim
<> wrote:

> According to yesterday's "Observer" newspaper,
> the committee will recommend that legislation be introduced to force
> all UK publishers to use an OA route, but I have to say I found that
> notion incredible.

Me too Charles, perhaps from your experience you might enlighten the people
on this list as to the significance (or otherwise) of such Committees and
their reports?

Bye, Barry Mahon
Received on Wed Jul 14 2004 - 09:56:49 BST

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