Gates Foundation champions open access

Gates Foundation champions open access by Rebecca Trager.

From the post:

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, based in Washington, US, has adopted a new policy that requires free, unrestricted access and reuse of all peer-reviewed published research that the foundation funds, including any underlying data sets.

The policy, announced last week, applies to all of the research that the Gates Foundation funds entirely or partly, and will come into effect on 1 January, 2015. Specifically, the new rule dictates that published research be made available under a ‘Creative Commons’ generic license, which means that it can be copied, redistributed, amended and commercialised. During a two-year transition period, the foundation will allow publishers a 12 month embargo period on access to their research papers and data sets.

If other science and humanities sponsors follow Gates, nearly universal open access will be an accomplished fact by the end of the decade.

There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth by those who expected protectionism to further their careers at the expense of the public. I can bear their discomfort with a great deal of equanimity. Can’t you?

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