April 25, 2012

RSP Webinar – Advocacy on implementing funders' mandates

Writing about web page http://www.rsp.ac.uk/events/advocacy-on-implementing-funders-mandates/

[This post was written at the time of the webinar, 27 March 2012, but a glitch (technical term) means that it didn't go live until now.]

In light of some of the continued discussions on various boards and forums about the future of Open Access and the impact of funders mandates on things like Elsevier's policies and the recently shelved Research Works Act, it was interesting to hear Scott Lapinski from Harvard University speak about his experiences.

Some highlights of his talk included:

  • Grants aren't always where you think they are! Harvard found NIH grants all over the University not just in the Medical School.
  • Challenges included; high number of researchers, researchers not being based on campus, issues of corresponding author vs grant holder, version issues, what to do about the 'non-compliance' letters and the coordinating messages to the range of people who need to be involved.
  • Support and advice came from the Harvard Office for Scholarly Communicationwhich has a dialogue will all disciplines and monitors all scholarly communications issues.
  • Range of advocacy options were discussed, from meetings and seminars to drop-ins in the linked hospitals as well as advocacy through new web tools for submission and management.
  • Scott also recommended getting in touch with researchers you know are non-compliant, stating that you might get a better reaction from a letter saying 'something might be wrong here, but the Library can help', rather than waiting for the letter saying 'you have been non-compliant and now your grants are in danger'.

All of which may be useful preparation as RCUK funders look to revise their mandates and strat tracking compliance more closely. Although this piece in the THE makes for further interesting reading on this topic.

[Update]Since this was written Harvard's push for open access has continued with this memorandum to faculty staff on journal pricing.


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