Bournemouth University has today signed up to the statement Moving Forwards on Open Access proposed by the League of European Research Universities (LERU), released in October 2015. The document calls upon the European Commission and the forthcoming Dutch EU Presidency to actively support open access policies to ensure that research funding goes to research, not to publishers, by working with all stakeholders to bring sensible solutions to the fore.
One of the key aims will be to stop the practice of ‘double dipping’ whereby institutions effectively pay publishers twice – once via a journal subscription fee and secondly via article processing charges (APCs) for gold open access articles. LERU is calling on the EC to review the business models of open access publishing and cites practices adopted by some publishers that allow universities to offset APCs against subscription costs, thus lessening the danger of ‘double dipping’. The aim of this approach is to allow European research to have maximum impact by making it publicly available immediately and to release funds for universities to invest in further research.The other key agenda item is to achieve greater consistency in embargo periods for green open access. The current situation is that there exist a variety of embargo periods (ranging from six to 24 months plus) which is confusing for authors, readers and universities. The aim is to ensure these are as short as possible to ensure cutting edge research makes its way into the public domain as quickly as possible. There is also currently a lack of uniformity of embargo periods for publishers and journals in different countries, and LERU are proposing this should be standardised.
LERU are currently calling upon the research community to sign up to the statement. To date over 3,000 individuals and institutions have signed up. The next step is for the statement and its support to be submitted to Commissioner Carols Moedas (research, science and innovation) and the Dutch EU Presidency in the first half of 2016.