MedOANet welcomes the communication and recommendation on access to and preservation of scientific information issued by the European Commission

The Mediterranean Open Access Network Project (MedOANet http://www.medoanet.eu) welcomes and supports the European Commission’s Communication "Towards better access to scientific information" and the Recommendation to Member States on "access to and preservation of scientific information", released yesterday.
As an EU-funded project with a focus on facilitating the implementation of coordinated open access policies in Mediterranean Europe and beyond, MedOANet shares the European Commission’s vision of boosting the benefits of the public investments on science and research for researchers, businesses and the public by increasing access to publicly funded research.

The European Commission’s commitment to expand the current FP7 Open Access Pilot programme in Horizon 2020 and its commitment to provide financial support for the infrastructures that host and provide access to research results (publications and data) is a very positive development. We welcome the Commission’s announcement that Open Access will be the general rule for all peer-reviewed publications arising from all projects funded in Horizon 2020. MedOANet further considers important the clarification on behalf of the Commission that both self-archiving into open access repositories (‘green’ open access) and open access publishing (‘gold’ open access) are valid approaches to achieve the aim of full open access to publications resulting from Horizon 2020 and that support will be provided towards developing both types of open access; with infrastructures in the first case, and subsidies to meet open access publishing fees in the second. Another significant development announced in the Communication is a pilot for open access to scientific data generated by projects in selected areas of Horizon 2020.

MedOANet strongly supports the call for harmonization of policies and the adoption of national strategies and infrastructures by all the Member States. We especially welcome the recommendations for the establishment of relevant open access policies by public funders and academic institutions receiving public funding as a rule in the Member States. These are policies requiring immediate open access to publicly funded research with potential embargo periods of no longer than six months after publication (or twelve months for social sciences and humanities).

These recommendations are completely convergent with MedOANet’s mission and objectives to enhance existing policies, strategies and structures for Open Access, to contribute towards the implementation of new ones and to promote national and regional coordination. The European Commission’s Communication and Recommendation on access to publicly funded research strengthens the commitment of the project partners to work in facilitating the implementation of open access policies among research funders and research performing institutions in the six Mediterranean countries involved in the project and beyond by collaborating with policymakers and major stakeholders in a coordinated fashion.

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MedOANet (www.medoanet.eu) addresses the necessity for coordinated strategies and policies in Open Access to scientific information in Europe. The project will enhance existing policies, strategies and structures for Open Access and will contribute towards the implementation of new ones in six Mediterranean countries: Greece, Turkey, Italy, France, Spain, Portugal. It will also promote national and regional coordination of policies, strategies and structures in these six countries and beyond.

The MedOANet Partners:
National Documentation Centre/NHRF (Greece-Coordinator)
FECYT - Fundación Española para la Ciencia y la Tecnología (Spain)
UMINHO - University of Minho (Portugal)
CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (France)
CASPUR - Consorzio Interuniversitario per le Applicazioni di Supercalcolo Università e Ricerca (Italy)
HACETTEPE UNIVERSITESI - Hacettepe University (Turkey)
ENCES - European Network for Copyright in Support of Education and Science (Germany)
LIBER - The Stichting LIBER Foundation (The Netherlands)
UNOTT - University of Nottingham (United Kingdom)