Open Access in Ireland

I am kind of new to Open Access and I am learning quite a lot reading interventions at this unconference (a summary of the different posts with some comments is on my blog). A few days ago I was in Dublin for the workshop Realising the Opportunities of Digital Humanities where they presented the Irish National Open Access Statement, a new document prepared by the National Steering Committee on Open Access Policy. To contribute to this unconference I will discuss the document in reference with what other participants have said.

The document aims to “promote unrestricted, online access to outputs ["peer-reviewed publications, research data and other research artefacts which feed the research process"] which result from research that is wholly or partially funded by the State”. Obviously this is only a part of the research that is produced, and also the issues discussed in the document do not directly refer to the problem of networking which are part of the unconference. But being this an official government endorsement of OA, I think is worth reading nonetheless.

The definition of open access that they used is provided by the Open Society Institute, in a document known as the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI, first published in 2002, then 2012):

…free availability on the public internet, permitting any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles, crawl them for indexing, pass them as data to software, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without financial, legal, or technical barriers other than those inseparable from gaining access to the internet itself. The only constraint on reproduction and distribution, and the only role for copyright in this domain, should be to give authors control over the integrity of their work and the right to be properly acknowledged and cited.

Apart from this general statement, there are a number of interesting set of principles that address some, if not all, of the issues highlighted during the unconference. I made a short list of those, linking them to relevant part of the document.

Brian Kelly

  • Putting papers online (like in a repository) is only part of the job. There is a need to facilitate discovery and access to the paper as well
  • Creating network around research interests, with links to relevant papers

Obviously this should be a duty of the essayist, but it seems that the guidelines of the document create a framework and encourage academic writers in this sense

Peer reviewed journal articles and other research outputs resulting in whole or in part from publicly-funded research should be deposited in an Open Access repository and made publicly discoverable, accessible and re-usable as soon as possible and on an on-going basis.

All research organisations, including research performers and research funders, should assist in the gathering, organising, and disseminating of Open Access metadata in standard formats for all new and old publications. Publishers should be encouraged to cooperate with this effort.

Stian Haklev

  • Accidental and intentional OER – Open Educational Resource
  • Three purpose of OER – direct use, reuse and transparency
  • multilingual and multicultural environments

This policy is designed to support the free flow of information across national and international research communities; to support the principle of research-enabled teaching and learning and the generation of Open Educational Resources (OER); to contribute to Open Innovation through richer and more effective knowledge transfer and diffusion; and to support greater transparency, accountability and public awareness of the results of publicly funded research.

A repository is suitable for this purpose when it provides free public access to its contents, supports interoperability with other repositories and with other research information and reporting systems, is harvestable by national portal/s and international aggregators and takes steps toward long-term preservation.

Joseph Kraus

  • Follow the money  to understand what will happen to open access in the future
  • Major funding bodies tend to impose rules on researcher regarding where and how publish their work
  • Pay an author-side publication charge (APC)
  • publish in an open access journal who does not ask for an APC
  • Hopefully more alternatives and more approach to funding will be available in the future

This policy confirms the freedom of researchers to publish wherever they feel is the most appropriate.

Researchers are encouraged to publish in Open Access Journals but publishing through Open Access Journals is not necessary to comply with this Open Access policy. Payment of additionalOpen Access charges through the ‘Gold’ Open Access model is not necessary to comply with this policy.

Researchers and their research funding agencies may choose to pay for this option. ‘Gold’ Open Access complements, but does not replace, the procedures for deposit in an Open Access repository required by this policy.

Research papers published in Open Access Journals must also be deposited in an Open Access repository in the same way as other publications.

About Giorgio Guzzetta

Researcher in Italian literature with a strong interest in comparative literary and cultural studies. My main interest is in narratives, particularly novels and movies, and also more technological ways of telling stories (digital media, blogs etc.) I am currently finding my way towards a PhD in Digital Humanities at University College Cork.

One Response to Open Access in Ireland

  1. Thanks so much Giorgio

    I’m delighted to hear about this as my college in Dublin doesn’t have a digital repository