Opening up science in Europe

Nieuws | de redactie
22 januari 2016 | How can we make the debate on ‘Open Science’ more alive and active? The Dutch EU-presidency sees this as a major topic for Europe. So, why not a Michelin-guide for Open Access publishing? Putting vision into action is the goal of the Open Science Presidency Conference in April 4-5.

To kick this off the debate at the premises of Neth-ER in Brussels brought together 0ver 60 European stakeholders to exchange ideas that will feed into a new European Action. Sijbolt Noorda, ambassador on Open Science of the Netherlands Ministry, invited the stakeholders to help prepare the Action Agenda and put their needs and ideas on the table. Putting vision into action is what the new European Action Agenda on Open Science, to be presented at the Open Science Presidency Conference on April 4-5, should do. In this agenda, necessary actions for Open Access of publications and data are collected.

Five lines

Over 60 stakeholders in the Open Science debate came together in Brussels to share their first thoughts on the new Action Agenda on Open Science. They exchanged ideas about Open Access of scholarly published articles and optimal re-use of research data. Ron Dekker, project leader on Open Science of the Ministry, outlined five Action Lines. Along these Action Lines the brainstorm sessions during the day were held. In these sessions participants exchanged ideas on the problems and needs of different aspects of Open Access. The five Action Lines are also a basis for the Action Agenda that will be presented during the conference on Open Science, organized by the Dutch presidency of the Council.

The five Action Lines (or the five ‘I’s) are:

  • Impact and evaluation: what is needed to change the academic evaluation system?
  • Incentives and involvement: what are good practices with regard to the involvement of researchers in the Open Science transition?
  • Infrastructure: What are the most promising scenario’s for a sustainable Open Access infrastructure to be developed in Europe?
  • Innovation: how can we reach new users?
  • Information sharing: how can we share knowledge, monitor and achieve compliance?

Michelin for OA?

During the breakout sessions, stakeholders shared their ideas in order to bring the Action Agenda further. Some of the outcomes are:

  • Clear objectives in the Open Access transition are necessary, just as is monitoring of the Open Access process.
  • Training and credits or awards for researchers that are publishing Open Access or reuse Open Access data are needed.
  • There is a need for a more creative dialogue between private and public parties, because there are many unused opportunities for cooperation.
  • There must be a concrete action agenda for every element of Open Access at every (university) level to realise more impact.

Some suggest a “Michelin”-ranking for Open Access publishing: rank publications to the level of openness. One star for an article that is only accessible to researchers, two stars for an article that is accessible to everyone and three stars when not only the article, but also the research data are open accessible.

The Open Science Presidency Conference will take place on the 4th and the 5th of April 2016. Council Conclusions on Open Science are expected to be adopted in the Competitiveness Council of May.

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