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Securing the Future of Open-Access Policies

Rob Johnson

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7557/5.3654

Abstract

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Research Consulting undertook a study for Knowledge Exchange that looked at the relation between open-access policies and services. Drawing on a consultation with funders, institutions and service providers across the five Knowledge Exchange countries and beyond, it identifies the key services needed to successfully implement open-access policies, and suggests priorities for action in support of an open scholarly infrastructure.

The study reviewed a wide range of OA policies from public research funders, private research funders and selected high education institutions from the five Knowledge Exchange countries; it finds that although policies vary considerably across countries, they generally share key requirements for green OA, gold OA and monitoring and compliance, with the clearest differences being in the emphasis placed on those requirements.

The study also provided a thorough review and classification of OA services, and identified the ones that are indispensable for the successful implementation of all OA policies. In particular, it reviewed the importance for author, institutional and funders’ workflows of: (1) underpinning services such as standards, metadata and identifiers (e.g. ORCID and FundREF); (2) abstracting and indexing services, such as the Directory of Open Access Journal; (3) support and dissemination services such as SHERPA; and (4) green OA services encompassing a wide range of repository and related services designed to improve interoperability across the green OA landscape.

Finally, we looked at critical challenges facing OA services, including uncertainties over their financial stability and governance models, that hamper – or can hamper in the future – their effective use and continued development, and we highlighted priorities for action from decision makers in the scholarly community. These include both specific recommendations to act in support of critical services, as well as strategic recommendations covering the actions and investments needed to create a coherent OA service infrastructure so as to allow more efficient and effective compliance with OA services.

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Copyright (c) 2015 Rob Johnson

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