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Times Higher Education – RCUK and Hefce step up push for open access

May 29, 2011

Via Scoop.itOpen learning news

The Higher Education Funding Council of England (HEFCE) and Research Councils UK are looking for ways to “support a managed transition to open access over the medium term” of research articles by academics in the UK, by way of enforcing the existing open-access mandate that requires authors to deposit their papers into open-access repositories. (As a sideline, I described my excitement about this movement in higher education at http://tinyurl.com/beyonddistanceblog-openaccess.)

Peter Murray-Rust, an open-access advocate and a chemistry researcher at the University of Cambridge, weighs in on the debate by urging the funders “to enforce their mandates more rigorously”, for example with financial penalties for non-compliance.

I wonder if a carrot might not be more effective? Look at the brilliant Humbox (http://www.humbox.ac.uk) repository to see how engaged academics can become when given a user-friendly interface (think Facebook) for sharing their teaching materials, and the promise of constructive comments/ dialogue with peers around their own and others’ open educational resources. Could such a system work across Higher Education Institutions in the UK for research papers as well?
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