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December 27, 2007

Public Access Mandate Now Law

Yesterday, President Bush signed into law the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2008 (H.R. 2764), which includes a provision directing the National Institutes of Health to provide the public with open online access to findings from its funded research. This is the first time the U.S. government has mandated public access to research funded by a major agency.

Readers may recall that the NIH's existing public access policy was implemented as a voluntary measure in 2005. With the enactment of this new law, researchers will be required to deposit electronic copies of their peer-reviewed manuscripts into PubMed Central, the National Library of Medicine's online repository, no later than 12 months after publication in a journal.

Many leading scientists, patient advocates, librarians, and others had lobbied for years to make research funded by tax dollars accessible to the public. This new mandate now will provide unfettered access to scientific findings for everyone seeking them.

The text of the law reads:

SEC. 218. The Director of the National Institutes of Health shall require that all investigators funded by the NIH submit or have submitted for them to the National Library of Medicine's PubMed Central an electronic version of their final, peer-reviewed manuscripts upon acceptance for publication, to be made publicly available no later than 12 months after the official date of publication: Provided, That the NIH shall implement the public access policy in a manner consistent with copyright law.

Posted by P. Kaufman at 7:15 AM

December 5, 2007

U of Pittsburgh Press Makes It's Older Books Openly Accessible

Press Release from U. Pittsburg...
(with thanks to Peter Suber's Open Access News)

Pitt’s Libraries and University Press Collaborate on Open Access to Press Titles, a press release from the University of Pittsburgh, November 29, 2007. Excerpt:

The University of Pittsburgh’s University Library System (ULS) and University Press have formed a partnership to provide digital editions of press titles as part of the library system’s D-Scribe Digital Publishing Program. Thirty-nine books from the Pitt Latin American Series published by the University of Pittsburgh Press are now available online, freely accessible to scholars and students worldwide. Ultimately, most of the Press’ titles older than 2 years will be provided through this open access platform.

For the past decade, the University Library System has been building digital collections on the Web under its D-Scribe Digital Publishing Program....

More titles will be added to the University of Pittsburgh Press Digital Editions each month until most of the current scholarly books published by the Press are available both in print and as digital editions....

The University of Pittsburgh Press Digital Editions may be viewed at http://digital.library.pitt.edu/p/pittpress/
and and through direct links from the Press website, http://www.upress.pitt.edu/.

Posted by Katie Newman at 5:27 PM