CERN Announces Nearly All High-Energy Physics Articles Will Switch To Open Access — The Largest-Ever OA Initiative

from the well,-flip dept

One of the key insights driving open access is that if all the money currently paid by libraries and other institutions for subscriptions to academic journals was instead used to pay processing charges — effectively, the cost of publishing — all articles could be made freely available online to everyone. Unfortunately, getting from one system to the other has proved hard, since it requires many libraries to drop subscriptions and pool their resources so that enough top-quality journals can be published on an open-access basis. That’s what makes this news from CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, such a milestone:

After intense preparations and consensus building, CERN has today confirmed that the SCOAP3 Open Access publishing initiative will start on 1 January 2014. With the support of partners in 24 countries, a vast fraction of scientific articles in the field of High-Energy Physics will become Open Access at no cost for any author: everyone will be able to read them; authors will retain copyright; and generous licenses will enable wide re-use of this information.

Making the transition from conventional subscriptions to open access was possible because of CERN’s clout in the high-energy physics community, which meant that it was able to persuade a large number of funders to pool their money:

Convened at CERN this is the largest scale global Open Access initiative ever built, involving an international collaboration of over one thousand libraries, library consortia and research organizations. SCOAP3 enjoys the support of funding agencies and has been established in co-operation with leading publishers.

That, in its turn, meant that all the top publishers were willing to participate — even Elsevier:

Eleven publishers of high quality international journals are participating in SCOAP3. Elsevier, IOP Publishing and Springer, together with their publishing partners, have been working with the network of SCOAP3 national contact points. Reductions in subscription fees for thousands of participating libraries worldwide have been arranged, making funds available for libraries to support SCOAP3.

The importance of this move is not only that practically all high-energy physics papers will soon be available in their final, edited form — not preprints — to everyone for no cost, and under a liberal CC-BY licence that allows all kinds of re-use as well as text and data mining, but also that CERN has demonstrated that the flip from old to new academic publishing models is no mere theoretical possibility, but can actually be achieved. Now we need funders in other disciplines to follow suit by banding together and getting publishers to sign up to similar large-scale projects.

Follow me @glynmoody on Twitter or, and +glynmoody on Google+

Filed Under: , ,

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “CERN Announces Nearly All High-Energy Physics Articles Will Switch To Open Access — The Largest-Ever OA Initiative”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment
Anonymous Coward says:

OMG the internet will disappear the Petaflood is coming!

Jokes aside, I hope people interested in “high-energy physics” have at least a gigabit connection because CERN generates terabytes of data per day.

No dude you brand new 4 TB HDD won’t cut it, if you have a 50 TB HDD somewhere though or equivalent you may be able to download one day and a half of data.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

Shame really, because I read a list of academic cheaters and it reminds me of the dangers of publishing things without making the raw data available.

Andrew Jeremy Wakefield
Yoshitaka Fujii
Shinichi Fujimura
William T. Summerlin
Jon Sudb?
Asle Sudb?
Diederik Alexander Stapel
Jan Hendrik Sch?n (infamous for the lack of raw data)

The list goes on and on and on in every country, every scientific field.

No raw data means no facts, for others to check.

As anecdote I was reading about academic misconduct and it seems the most cheaters are found in the medical field, of course I should count and classify all the case I could find and post some numbers, that would be my raw data against which others could include insights, point to weak points etc, without that, my statement is as good as something stuck to the bottom of my shoe.

Oh well, I guess something is better than nothing anyways, at least is a sneak pick under what may come into the future.

Ninja (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Common sense. It’s not even remotely feasible to put the raw data available for download but I’m guessing any serious scientist can take a peek in their facilities. And even so I highly doubt the ones working directly with the data deal with the entirety of it. My guess is that they kind of audit if their automated means of sorting and digesting the data are working by checking portions of it. Sure there are fields where it is feasible (at least one you mentioned) and it is important to have the raw data available but I guess it’s not possible in this case.

DannyB (profile) says:

Re: The RIAA and MPAA will get this shut down

The RIAA and MPAA will move quickly to get this initiative stopped.

Access to this would encourage people to have fast internet connections — something the **AA critters don’t want anyone to have. It also requires enormous amounts of data storage — another thing the **AA holes don’t want anyone to have.

If you have large storage and fast internet, then you must be a pirate. No other legitimate use could exist. Similarly for bit torrent. It could not possibly have non-infringing uses because it is capable of being used for infringement.

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...