European Commission discusses future of scientific publishing

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Mon, 19 Feb 2007 12:31:22 +0000

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Mon, 19 Feb 2007 12:21:22 -0000
From: Philip Pothen <p.pothen --- JISC.AC.UK>
Subject: European Commission discusses future of scientific publishing

Conference report

European Commission discusses future of scientific publishing

19th February, 2007. More than 500 delegates from nearly 50 countries
attended a major European Commission conference last week to discuss the
future of scientific publishing in the European Research Area. Held in
Brussels, the conference attracted researchers, publishers, policy makers,
research funders, librarians and administrators drawn to debate the issues
of open access of research outputs, dissemination of research and
preservation in the digital age.

Opening the two day conference, the EU Commissioner for Science and Research
Janez Potocnik stressed the importance of raising the profile and standing
of European research and of having a European science infrastructure to
drive forward innovation and competitiveness.

Earlier the Commissioner had received a petition
<> , sponsored
by JISC and European partners, which was signed by more than 20,000
individuals and nearly 750 organisations, indicating the level of public
support for the principle of open access (see last week's JISC news item
<> ).

Among the questions discussed over the two days were the policies of
research funding bodies, including the European Commission, new
opportunities for the research community in widening access to their
research outputs, and a debate on the scientific publication market.

Discussion highlighted the need to address the challenges of providing not
just open access to information but to provide integrated access to both
full text of articles and primary research data and to deliver new and
innovative means of exploiting the capabilities of data mining for further

Other topics covered during the conference included business models for
scientific publications, the required e-infrastructure, the need for
long-term preservation, quality assurance, and copyright and digital rights
management. The need to be adaptable to change, for further research on data
repositories and the continued support of peer review were further points
raised during discussion sessions.

The event was closed by Viviane Reading, EU Commissioner for Information
Society and Media, who announced that scientific publishing will be one of
the highlights of the upcoming Portuguese presidency of the European
Commission. She also reported that the Commission would like a discussion
with ministers and the European Parliament on these issues and to work
towards a common European approach.

In principle, she said, access to research outputs should be accessible to
all through open repositories after an embargo period. The EC will
experiment, she continued, with faster and wider access and will support the
cost of author payments in their research grants.

The Commissioner told delegates that the EC will fund infrastructure to
store and share data through the FP7 (Seventh Framework Programme)
Capacities Programme which has 50m Euros set aside to build the top level
infrastructure. A further 25m Euros is earmarked for preservation in the ICT
programme in 2007-2008 with 10m Euros for greater accessibility and
usability through the e-content programme. Through the Digital Library
Forum, the Commission will bring the various stakeholders together and
listen to all views in establishing a way forward, she concluded.

For further information on the Seventh Framework programme, please go to:
FP7 <>
Received on Mon Feb 19 2007 - 12:48:44 GMT

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