Finch Report on Open Access released today

    The Finch Report on Open Access in the UK is out: (PDF). If you open this document with Utopia Documents, you can see – and add – comments that will be publicly visible.

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    This report, Accessibility, sustainability, excellence: how to expand access to research  publications, is the product of a year’s work by a committed and knowledgeable group of  individuals drawn from academia, research funders and publishing. The task which we were  set was by no means straightforward. We were charged with recommending how to develop a  model, which would be both effective and sustainable over time, for expanding access to the  published findings of research.

    There is no simple answer to the question set. Indeed had there been a simple answer there  would have been no need to undertake this exercise. Members of the group represented  different constituencies who have legitimately different interests and different priorities, in
    relation to the publication of research and its subsequent use. What united them however was  a commitment to work towards an outcome which, although inevitably not perfect from any  constituency’s individual perspective, would signal an acceptable and sustainable future.

    I believe that this report represents such an outcome, though inevitably there will continue to  be debates about the best way of progressing these objectives. This could not have been  achieved without the high level of commitment shown by group members, their willingness to cooperate in this enterprise and the sheer amount of work which was undertaken by many  people – including members of three sub-groups – to get us to the final outcome. This was a  working group in the fullest sense, and I am enormously grateful to all its members.