Current News & Issues
See below for current news about scholarly communications issues, with emphasis on news from and affecting the University of California.
News and events from previous years can be found in the News Archive.
- The Taxpayer Access to Publicly Funded Research Act (AB 609) was introduced in the California Assembly on February 20, 2013 by Assembly Member Brian Nestande. This bill would require researchers who receive state agency-funded research grants to make copies of peer-reviewed manuscripts resulting from those grants freely available to the public. On April 26, the University of California Office of State Governmental Relations released a letter supporting the bill. The full text and current status of the bill can be viewed at the State Assembly's website.
- The UC Libraries announce campus-based open access fund pilots to support UC faculty who wish to make their research findings immediately and freely available to the public.
- In May, 2012, the UCSF Academic Senate voted to adopt an open access policy that will help make electronic versions of current and future scientific articles freely available to the public. UCSF is the largest scientific institution in the nation to adopt an open-access policy and among the first public universities to do so.
On February 7, the California Digital Library (CDL) announced that it is joining the Public Knowledge Project (PKP) as a major development partner in open access scholarly publishing. More information is available here and on the CDL's eScholarship website.
On January 9, the Council of University Librarians submitted comments in response to two Requests for Information from the White House's Office of Science and Technology Policy. The RFI's, released in November, 2011, asked for public input on long term preservation of and public access to the results of federally funded research, including digital data and peer-reviewed scholarly publications. See the CoUL responses here.
The Google Book Search Settlement Agreement was rejected by Federal Judge Denny Chin on March 22, 2011. Judge Chin concluded that the Agreement was not "fair, adequate, and reasonable," per legal standards. He suggested that an "opt-in" settlement, rather than the proposed "opt-out" arragement, might ameliorate objections. The full decision can be found here.
Read the UC Libraries Statement regarding the federal court decision on the proposed Google Books Amended Settlement Agreement.
The UC-Springer Open Access Pilot has ended effective March 1st, 2011. During the two-year pilot negotiated between the California Digital Library (CDL) and Springer, UC-authored articles accepted for publication in 2009 and 2010 in most of the 2,000+ Springer journals were published as open access under Springer’s Open Choice program. Unfortunately, Springer has decided to discontinue this arrangement. Articles published as part of this pilot remain fully accessible through CDL’s eScholarship publishing platform as well as on the Springerlink platform. An assessment of the pilot will be conducted this spring.
UC authors wishing to make their Springer articles open access can choose to pay Springer’s standard article publication fee or submit their work to one of Springer’s new open access journals published under the SpringerOpen imprint, which offers discounted fees. Authors may also wish to consider other open access venues for disseminating their work.
Please feel free to contact Ivy Anderson at the California Digital Library with any questions.
Representatives from the University of California and Nature Publishing Group met on August 17, 2010, to discuss the organizations' current licensing challenges and the larger issues of scholarly communication sustainability. Read the full statement, released on August 25.
- Information about the University of California and Nature Publishing Group negotiations can now be found on a dedicated web page.
A June 4, 2010, letter to UC Faculty describes a proposal to quadruple the price of a UC license for Nature and its 67 affiliated journals. The letter, authored by the executive director of California Digital Library (CDL), the chair of University Committee on Library and Scholarly Communication of the Academic Senate and the convener of University Librarians Council, is an informational update about the UC Libraries' pricing challenges with the Nature Publishing Group (NPG) and the likelihood that the libraries will have to cancel some or all NPG titles in light of the University's current budget challenges. The letter also describes a potential boycott that some faculty are proposing if the dispute cannot be satisfactorily resolved.
Read more about the UC and NPG negotiations.
- UC Provost and Executive Vice President Lawrence H. Pitts, along with 26 other university presidents, provosts, and research vice presidents, signed an An Open Letter to the Higher Education Community affirming UC's support for increased public access to federally-funded research results. The letter, which endorsess the Federal Research Public Access Act (S.1373 and H.R.5073) was issued on April 23, 2010.
- October 19-23 marks the first annual Open Access Week (http://www.openaccessweek.org/), which is designed to raise awareness of this growing international movement that uses the Internet to throw open the locked doors that once hid knowledge. Open access encourages the unrestricted sharing of research results with everyone, everywhere, for the advancement of science and society. Read more...
- In August 2006, the University of California became the sixth library to partner with Google to digitize volumes from UC's extensive print collections as part of the Google Book Search Library Project. In October 2008, Google announced a settlement of a class action lawsuit by the Authors Guild of America and a separate suit by representative members of the Association of American Publishers, both of which sought to bar Google from scanning copies of in-copyright books held in the collections of major U.S. libraries. A court hearing on the settlement, which must be approved by the courts in order for it to take effect, is scheduled for October 7, 2009.
- The California Digital Library (CDL) and Springer have signed a ground-breaking agreement in which UC-authored articles accepted for publication in most of the 2000+ Springer journals will be published using Springer Open Choice, which brings with it full and immediate access to all readers. This means that UC authors will pay no additional publication fees in order for their articles to be immediately and fully open to all. Under the agreement, articles will be published under a license in which authors retain the right to distribute and re-use their articles freely.
For more information, see the UC/Springer Open Access Pilot or talk to a librarian on your campus.