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February 6, 2007
American Society for Cell Biology Position on Public Access to Scientific Literature
The American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB), a nonprofit scientific society of over 11,000 members at leading research institutions, state colleges, undergraduate teaching institutions, and biotechnology companies, has come out with a strongly worded statement in favor of providing free access to scienitfic literature as quickly as feasible. Since 2001 their journal, the Molecular Biology of the Cell, has provided free access to all it's content 2 months after publication, and yet, as they point out, the organization and publication have remained financially profitable.
From their statement:
- The ASCB believes strongly that barriers to scientific communication slow scientific progress. The more widely scientific results are disseminated, the more readily they can be understood, applied, and built upon. The sooner findings are shared, the faster they will lead to new scientific insights and breakthroughs.
- The ASCB believes that taxpayers are best served when all scientists, educators, physicians, and members of the public – including patients and their families – have access to publicly funded research results.
- We believe that a six-month embargo period represents a reasonable compromise between the financial requirements of supporting a journal and the need for access to current research.
Thus, they conclude:
For these reasons, the ASCB supports efforts to require that the results of federally funded biomedical research be made freely available to the public, no more than six months after they are published.
Posted by Katie Newman at February 6, 2007 3:33 PM