New survey shows: Economists sympathize with publishing reforms and Open Access

Posted: May 16th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Newspost | Tags: , , | 1 Comment »

A recent ZBW survey among German economists shows that they sympathize with the Elsevier boycott and Open Access, but still support the established reputation and ranking systems

Right now scientists from around the world are boycotting the Elsevier publishing house. The dominant magazine publisher stands accused of monopolizing scientific content by only making it accessible to the public for astronomical subscription prices. In contrast to this, the Open Access community requests that all publicly financed research findings should be made accessible for free. In early May, the ZBW held a survey regarding the current Elsevier boycott and the subject of Open Access which found that the established system of expensive subscription magazines is indeed unpopular, but is largely upheld because of a shortage of alternatives.

Read the full press release here


EU survey confirms: 90% support Open Access for publicly funded research publications

Posted: April 23rd, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Newspost | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

The EU recently released the results of the survey “scientific information in the digital age”. They are based on 1140 responses from Member states, coming from research funding organisations, university/research institutes, libraries, publishers, international organisations and individual researchers.

The survey focused on the three topics “scientific publications”, “research data” and “Preservation of digital scientific information”. Concerning scientific publications the answers were:

  • 84% see access problems to scientific publications in Europe
  • The main reasons are seen in high prices of journals/subscriptions (89 %) and limited library budgets (85 %)
  • 91% agree that Open Access increases the dissemination of scientific publications
  • 90% support the idea that publications resulting from publicly funded research should be avaliable in open access
  • 56% see six months as a desirable embargo period for licensed material, before it has to be available in open access
  • 86% agree on the development of an EU network of repositories

Elsevier responds to critics with policy change

Posted: February 27th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Newspost | Tags: , , | Comments Off

Publisher withdraws support for the Research Works Act

Elsevier today published a press release, where they state their withdrawal for the Research Works Act. The publisher had initially supported this act, which proposes legislation that would prevent the US government from mandating Open Access to taxpayer-funded research.

In it’s press release Elsevier also states that

(…) while withdrawing support for the Research Works Act, we will continue to join with those many other nonprofit and commercial publishers and scholarly societies that oppose repeated efforts to extend mandates through legislation.

Even though the press release marks not a complete U-turn of Elsevier’s policy towards Open Access, it still seems as a sign, that the protest in the research community against the publishers business practices has already shown some impact.


COAR publishes open letter to Elsevier

Posted: February 7th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Monthly Report | Tags: , , | Comments Off

In support for the researchers initiative “The Cost of Knowledge” against Elsevier’s business practices, the international repository network COAR (Confederation of Open Access Repositories) released an open letter to the publisher yesterday. In the letter COAR

“urges Elsevier to reconsider its prohibitive approach to open access and revise its policies to allow the deposit of research articles with minimum delay. We encourage publishers to work closely with the library and repository communities to develop effective and sustainable methods for article deposit that serve the needs of researchers, their institutions”


Researcher Initiative for Publishing reform

Posted: January 30th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Monthly Report | Tags: , , , | Comments Off

Under the headline “The Cost of Knowledge” more than 7000 researchers protest against Elsevier’s business practices.

Their main request is the right of authors to achieve easily-accessible distribution of their work (e.g. via Open Access business models). As long as Elsevier does not comply with that, the signing researchers refrain to do any publishing, refereeing or editorial work for Elsevier journals. The initiative started in the mathematical science, but also several Economists have signed the petition.


ZBW Leibniz Gemeinschaft Open Access DFG