FW: Open Access to Scientific Research Gets Boost
- Marjorie, Thank you for this! Andrius, http://www.ms.lt
While providing open access to scientific research isn't quite the same
as putting the research in the public domain, it seems to be a step in
that direction. Thought you'd be interested.
From: EHP Media [mailto:ehpmedia@...]
Sent: Friday, December 12, 2003 1:16 PM
Subject: Open Access to Scientific Research Gets Boost
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Brandon Adams
December 12, 2003 919-541-2359
Open Access to Scientific Research Gets Boost
As NIH-Backed Publication Decides to Make the Switch
Environmental Health Perspectives Will
Provide Free Access Online Starting January 1
[RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC] The open access movement, in which
published scientific research is made freely available on the Internet,
gained momentum today when Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP), the
peer-reviewed journal of the National Institute of Environmental Health
Sciences, announced it would adopt an open access policy and provide its
research articles and news content free of charge online beginning
"The rationale behind the open access philosophy--that science best
benefits society when it's freely and immediately available to all--is
just too compelling to ignore. As part of the United States government,
we felt it important that we take a leadership role in this area," said
Dr. Kenneth Olden, director of the NIEHS. "The web affords us a unique
opportunity to enhance scientific discourse that we simply could not
The open access philosophy was formalized at a meeting of scientific
editors and publishers held in Budapest in December 2001 and organized
by the Open Society Institute, a foundation started by philanthropist
George Soros that is seeking to further the open access paradigm. A
consensus statement from that meeting, called the Budapest Open Access
Initiative, laid out the goals and issues involved in providing
peer-reviewed scientific literature without restriction on the Internet.
The statement says in part, "Removing access barriers to this literature
will accelerate research, enrich education, share the learning of the
rich with the poor and the poor with the rich, make this literature as
useful as it can be, and lay the foundation for uniting humanity in a
common intellectual conversation and quest for knowledge."
In October 2003, a venture called the Public Library of Science, the
brainchild of Dr. Harold Varmus, former director of the National
Institutes of Health, began publishing its first open access science
journal, PLOS-Biology. Says Dr. Varmus, "I am very pleased to learn that
Environmental Health Perspectives will be joining the growing ranks of
journals that are adopting the policy of open access to better serve
science and society. It is especially important for distinguished,
peer-reviewed journals that publish works of special interest to the
public, such as those in environmental health sciences, to be readily
available to the public and to the scientific community around the globe."
In addition to being available for free at ehponline, EHP content will
also be deposited in PubMed Central, the U.S. National Library of
Medicine's free and unrestricted digital archive.
"We believe that making our science freely available will have very real
benefits, not just to society, but also to the publication," said Dr.
Thomas Goehl, editor-in-chief of EHP. "We expect our research to be more
widely referenced, resulting in a further enhancement of the prestige of
the journal. We will balance some of the revenue loss by increasing page
charges paid by the authors. The benefit to our authors, our readers and
now the public makes this the absolute right thing to do."
Converting to an open access model is the latest step taken by EHP to
reach out to an international audience. EHP currently provides
complimentary print copies of the journal to institutions in developing
countries, and recently EHP began posting on its website (ehponline.org)
translations of article summaries in Chinese, French, Japanese, Russian,
and Spanish. "We're committed to doing everything we can to allow this
cutting-edge environmental health research to benefit people across the
globe," Goehl said.
Coinciding with the conversion to open access, EHP is also expanding and
updating its website, which houses over 10,000 archived research
articles. This expansion will make material more easily accessible for
an expected large increase in the number of visitors.
NIEHS is an institute of the National Institutes of Health, part of the
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. More information is
available online at http://www.ehponline.org/.
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