November 21, 2011

Open Access: Changes in Publishing Practices

Yvonne Budden is the author for this week's theme. Yvonne is a librarian and is the E-repositories manager here at Warwick. Yvonne will be supporting registered participants on this 23 Things course through your blogs, and please also at an Open Access drop-in, Wednesday 23 November, 12-1 REx Seminar Room 3. Bring along any of your questions on open access, WRAP or copyright!

Over the past decade the way scholars publish their material has seen some radical changes. Scholars have become dissatisfied by the speed of publishing and the balance of power between researchers and publishers. One of the solutions that has been developed is open access. The below video explains some more:

Open Access 101 from The Right to Research Coalition on Vimeo.

Open access to information serves the interests of many different groups; Researchers gain from a wider audience than they might have had from traditional journal publication as their work is visible to every search tool on the web and records in repositories like the Warwick Research Archive Portal are actively harvested by large aggregator services. There is also some evidence that open access can improve the number of citations for each paper. Readers are no longer restricted to just what their library can afford. Funding bodies require public access to publicly funded research and the members of the public who no longer have to negotiate costly access to journals.

Open access is achieved in two broad fashions:

  • ‘Green’ open access is a system that works in concert with existing publishing models. Most commonly this allows the author to make available the ‘accepted’ version of their paper in a repository or on their own websites. The accepted version is also known as the post-print or final author’s version, the version after peer review but before publisher copy editing.
  • ‘Gold’ open access is a system of open access which is achieved through the traditional publishing process. This allows the final, published version to be made open access following the payment of a fee, usually known as the “article processing charge”. Some funders have created mechanisms and funds to assist authors in paying these fees where they have mandated open access to funded research.

Open access began as a movement to provide access to research results, in the form of traditional scholarly outputs, e.g. journal articles, books, etc. Open access, however can cover a wide range of material; from open educational resources (OERs; lecture notes and videos of lectures etc.); open research data; research blogs; grey literature; open science (experimental data and lab procedures) and many others. Open access allows researchers to reach a wider audience with their work and can lead to collaboration with colleagues in other institutions around the world and with industry.

Many of the earlier ‘things’ have emphasised the importance of your online presence when building your reputation as a researcher: open access to your research can be a vital part of this process. The things we will look at this week are intended as a short introduction to some of the ways in which you can interact with open access and some of the things you may need to consider when doing so.

Further information:

Forthcoming events on this theme:

  • Open Access drop-in, Wednesday 23 November, 12-1 REx Seminar Room 3. Bring along any of your questions on open access, WRAP or copyright!
  • Springer Authors' Workshop, 30 November 2011, 10-1 Research Exchange.

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  • Hi Doug, Which page is that? Can you provide a link so that I can update it if it's one of ours. Tha… by Emma Cragg on this entry
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