CERN goes Open Access

Nieuws | de redactie
5 oktober 2012 | Particle physics takes a big leap towards Open Access. Broad dissemination of preliminary findings was already customary in the field; the new SCOAP3-initiative adds peer review and widens the audience further.

Representatives from the science funding agencies and librarycommunities of 29 countries have this week launched the SCOAP3 Open Access initiative. OpenAccess revolutionizes the traditional scientific publishing modelwith scientific papers being made freely available to all, andpublishers paid directly for their indispensable peer-reviewservices to the community.

“It is gratifying to see how the model of internationalcollaboration in particle physics has been applied to addressingthe important societal issue of open access to scientificinformation,” said CERN Director General RolfHeuer. “I am proud that CERN has contributed to exploringwin-win solutions to this issue, which is important to bothscientists and science policy makers the world over.”

Vital peer review

The objective of SCOAP3 is to grant unrestricted access toscientific articles appearing in scientific journals in the fieldof particle physics, which so far have only been available toscientists through certain university libraries, and generallyunavailable to a wider public. Open dissemination of preliminaryinformation, in the form of pre-peer review articles known aspreprints, has been the norm in particle physics for two decades.SCOAP3 now brings the vital peer review service provided byjournals into the Open Access world.

In the SCOAP3 model, libraries and funding agencies poolresources currently used to subscribe to journal content and usethem to support the peer-review system directly instead. Journalpublishers then make their articles Open Access, which means thatanyone can read them. Authors retain the copyright, and generouslicenses for re-use are used.

Publishers cooperate

Publishers of 12 journals, accounting for the vast majority ofarticles in the field, have been identified for participation inSCOAP3 through an open and competitive process, and the SCOAP3initiative looks forward to establishing more partnerships with keyinstitutions in Europe, America and Asia as it moves through thetechnical steps of organizing the re-direction of funds from thecurrent subscription model to a common internationally coordinatedfund. SCOAP3 expects to be operational for articles published as of2014.

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