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US Petition for Public Access to Research

Momentum for public access to publicly-funded research was boosted last month with the celebration of a National Day of Action by students across the United States (orchestrated by freeculture.org) and the presentation of over 21,000 individual and organizational signatures to the European Commission urging the adoption of policies to encourage open access to research.

Now in the US, several leading American organizations – representing researchers, libraries, health groups, students, and consumers – are jointly supporting a Petition for Public Access to Publicly Funded Research.

The petition, which is open to supporters around the world, will demonstrate clearly to policymakers the depth and breadth of support for public access to federally-funded research in the US. As lawmakers consider policies and legislation to advance public access, it is critical that supporters step forward and be counted.

Even if you signed the European petition, it’s important that you sign the US petition as well. Here’s why:

* The European Commission petition was written explicitly to support public access to research publications in Europe.

* The US petition is written to support public access to research funded by the US government as well as the reintroduction and passage of the Federal Research Public Access Act.

* The U.S. petition collects state-specific information, which is essential to making the case for public access to individual lawmakers.

The Petition for “Public Access to Publicly Funded Research in the United States” is open to individuals and organizations of all types. If you are a researcher whose work is funded by the federal government, your signature is especially important because it shows that you want your work to be shared and used.

Please distribute this message and invite your colleagues and friends to sign the petition so that as much progress as possible may be made in the 110th Congress.

Discussion
  1. As an MA student in Globalization and International development, i wish to write my thesis on this. I’m very excited about the U.S. petition and the E.U. petition and. Over a short period of time we’ve seen the Geneva Declaration on the future of WIPO, the Bethesda and Berlin Declarations, the Budapest open access initiative and their petition, the significant number of letters of support from educational leaders, the resignation of several journals from publishers and re-establishment as open-access, the A2k draft treaty, the APC Internet Rights treaty, proposals from the IFLA and others at the WIPO development agenda and of course PloS. We’ve seen NIH in the U.S. develop a policy and CIHR in Canada draft one. In Canada it seems we don’t have a significant conference declaration, petition, movement etc. that I’m aware of and it doesn’t seem to be on the government’s radar. On the plus side, U of T, uCalgary and possible others are moving towards D-space and e-repositories.

    Students and faculty at uOttawa wish to share knowledge with partners in ldc countries, who have virtually no journal subscriptions, and we see along with the ‘within six months’ policy, an mandatory exception for publishers in affiliation agreements with universities that qualify for HINARI, allowing such partnerships to include equal access to our digital database and on-line subscriptions for students and faculty. This is something of a legal quagmire to implement under current copyright law and contracts with publishers, we’ve been told.

    I’m looking for support for a policy in Canada similar to what’s proposed for the E.U. and the U.S. I’ve written a draft policy brief for Canadian government, with an argument from human rights in the context of normative values of scholarship, economics, self-determination in development etc. I would appreciate if I could get help editing it, get letters of support and get a Canadian petition started. I can send the draft around to anyone willing to help who has a background in A2k, human rights law, economics of IPR etc. Any suggestions for Canadian contacts would be appreciated.

    also see http://www.michaelgeist.ca

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