Support growing for open access scientific publications

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Thu, 1 Mar 2007 16:07:01 +0000

 P R E S S R E L E A S E

Utrecht, 1 March 2007

Support growing for open access to scientific publications

Efforts to ensure open access to scientific publications are gaining
support. The latest breakthrough is that all the universities in the
Netherlands have now signed the Berlin Declaration. In the declaration
(an initiative of the Max Planck Society), a large number of
universities throughout Europe and beyond declare to make all their
scholarly and scientific articles available in open access archives. The
results of publicly funded research will then be available to all, free
of charge, via online databases. At the moment, access to such articles
is impeded by the high subscription fees for scientific periodicals. The
European Commission intends experimenting with open access in the coming
years. SURF was one of the first signatories of the Berlin Declaration.

According to the European Commission, the results of research financed
by the European Union should be accessible to all, free of charge, after
a certain period of time. Scientists submitting research proposals to
the Commission are therefore invited to apply for a grant to publish the
results of their research in an open access database. The Commission
nevertheless favours an embargo period on free access in order to avoid
antagonising publishers.

In response, SURF initiated an Internet petition in early February
calling on the Commission to restrict the embargo period for research
articles to six months following publication. After that six-month
period, articles should be available via open access databases.
Researchers may still add their names to the Internet petition, which
can be found at <> . The
signatures will be presented to the European Parliament in the spring.

About SURF
SURF is a partnership organisation whose members - universities,
institutes of higher professional education, and research organisations
- work together on innovations in ICT. Its aim is to fully utilise the
possibilities of ICT in order to improve the quality of higher education
and research. SURF offers Dutch higher education and research a firm
foundation for excellence.

Note for editors

For more information, please contact:

Stichting SURF
Leo Waaijers
T +31 (0)30 234 6600

For a list of all signatories, see the signatory page of the Max Planck
Gesellschaft <> .

Kind regards,

Sabrina Vredenberg

| management-assistant | SURF Foundation| Graadt van Roggenweg 340 |
Postbus 2290 | 3500 GG Utrecht | The Netherlands |T +31 (0)30 234 66 00
| F +31 (0)30 233 29 60 | W | |
Received on Thu Mar 01 2007 - 16:13:33 GMT

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