Re: OA in Europe suffers a setback

From: Talat Chaudhri [tac] <tac_at_ABER.AC.UK>
Date: Tue, 27 Nov 2007 11:34:33 -0000

Absolutely right. Mandates are all very well, whether within
universities or nationally, but they are worthless unless they are
complied with. Penalties for non-compliance are effectively impossible.
I heard someone at UKCoRR compare the situation to speeding fines
lately. Do these stop people from driving at 40mph in a 30mph zone? No.
In fact, the fact that the law is unenforceable, penalties not
withstanding, tends to bring any law or mandate into disrepute.

Two things will make OA work: (1) active and continuous advocacy; (2)
mandates from funding bodies, with future funding conditional on
compliance. However, we have already encountered academics under such
financially dependent mandates who did not realise this, and without
advocacy on our part would apparently have been penalised in future.

All this simply shows that the carrot is always more effective than the
stick. This should be obvious to anyone who has been involved in
education. You can, as the saying goes, take a horse to water, but you
can't make it drink.

Brussels will have to deal with OA when the time is ripe. Cheers,

Received on Tue Nov 27 2007 - 13:01:24 GMT

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