17 March 2016

Tickell report positive on the future of Open Access in the UK

Following the Burgess Review of Research Councils UK Open Access Policy and RCUK’s response, this report considers the wider scope of UK Open Access generally and how scholarly publishing markets and the policy landscape are developing including Open Data.

The advice was provided by Professor Adam Tickell, the respected Provost and Vice-Principal, University of Birmingham and Chair of Universities UK (UUK) Open Access Coordination Group.

Its main conclusion was positive on progress to date:
  • Open Access to research continues to be a public benefit and the UK remains a world leader.
  • Research Councils UK should continue to support Gold Open Access charges. 
Figure 3: Gold OA charges paid to publishers from a sample of institutions, 2015 (Open Government Licence)

However, some changes are suggested in the recommendations.

Some key recommendations:
  • Universities should be encouraged to sign up to the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA)
  • UUK Open Access Coordination Group to support the development of agreed service standards around Gold
  • UK Open Access policy should offer greater choice to research producers
  • UK Open Data Forum to coordinate work associated with a ‘roadmap’ for sector infrastructure
The DORA recommendation is intended to reduce the effect of researcher preference for traditional prestige publications and move towards the type of responsible metrics advocated in Hefce’s The Metric Tide report.

Jo Johnson, Minister of State for Universities and Science, was encouraging and supportive in his response:
“I am confident that, by 2020, the UK will be publishing almost all of our scientific output through open access.”

Report and ministerial response.

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