Friday, November 23, 2007

Council of European Union Adopts Conclusions on Access, Dissemination & Preservation

Today the Council of the European Union adopted "Council Conclusions on scientific information in the digital age: access, dissemination and preservation" during the 2832nd Competitiveness Council meeting held in Brussels on 22-23 November 2007.

The Council has issued clear invitations to member states and to the Commission to develop policies and actions on the dissemination of scientific and research information (including datasets) and on digital preservation. No sign of a mandate though...

The press version of the Conclusions can be accessed here

Friday, September 14, 2007

Irish Research Council Proposes OA Mandate in line with EURAB Recommendations

The first Irish research funding council to propose an Open Access mandate is the Irish Research Council for Science, Engineering & Technology (IRCSET). Today IRCSET has invited submissions from the research community, and other interested parties, regarding a proposed IRCSET policy on Open Access to Publications, stating:

"IRCSET intends to put in place a policy whereby researchers will be required to make their publications available on an open access basis - where these result in whole or in part from IRCSET funded research - as soon as possible after publication. The requirement will be that these should be made openly accessible within a period of 6 months at the latest following initial publication."

The proposed policy is in line with the European Research Advisory Board (EURAB) Policy in relation to scientific publication. Further details on the EURAB Policy are available here.

IRCSET invites all interested parties (including organisations and individuals) to make their views known.
The closing date for opinions or submissions is Friday 28th September, 2007. Further information is available at this link.

In proposing this mandate, IRCSET joins with other important funders of research internationally (Wellcome Trust, UK Research Councils, etc.) in seeking to maximise the impact of the research it funds through the widest possible dissemination of its research outputs. A list of international research finders who have adopted Open Access mandates is available here.

The IRCSET webpage provides information on the supporting infrastructure for Open Access currently being developed in Irish universities: "A consortium of Irish universities is now engaged in the development of the Irish Universities Association Libraries National Research Portal – an open access repository system connecting the repositories of each participating institution for fuller public accessibility..." and goes on to state: "the IUA Librarians are committed to supporting Irish researchers to make their research papers available on open access and each institution will provide, to the best of its ability, assistance in copyright clearance, deposit of papers and other matters of possible concern."

Sunday, February 18, 2007

European Commission Communication on Access to Scientific Information

The European Commission has adopted a Communication on access to scientific information in the digital age. The Communication announces a series of measures on how the Commission will deal with open access in FP7 funded projects - and how it will use its funding programmes to improve the access to and the preservation of scientific information. The following measures will be adopted:

– Costs for publishing, including open access publishing, defined as eligible costs in
Community funded research projects.
– Specific guidelines to be issued, within specific programmes, on the publication of articles
in open repositories.

– Approximately €50 million for work on infrastructures, in particular digital repositories, in
– Approximately €25 million for digital preservation and collaborative tools in 2007-2008.
– Approximately €10 million on access to and use of scientific information through
eContentplus programme.

– Study on the economic aspects of digital preservation.
– Funding of research on publication business models and on the scientific publication

– Deliberations in the European Parliament and Council; further discussions with
– Exchange of good practices for new models of access to, dissemination of, and
preservation of scientific information.

Related documents are available here - the Staff Working Paper is useful and comprehensive.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

TARA-Derived Teaching/Learning Resources - Test

TARA meets Flickr!
Repository interoperability is a hot issue internationally and a number of important projects are currently underway in this area. Meanwhile we have an immediate practical need to learn about the potential for linkages between the primary research resources deposited in TARA and the university's teaching needs 'on the ground'. A seamless interface between Dspace-based TARA, the College VLE (WebCT or equivalent) and the National Digital Learning Repository (NDLR) would be great, but before thinking about building system solutions we need to understand more about the needs and behaviours of potential users.

Selected images from the Nicholas K. Robinson Collection of Caricature have been uploaded from TARA directly to Flickr (via Flock). This is a test demo examining a Web 2.0 method - quick, simple, user-generated and free! - of repurposing TARA repository-based resources for use in teaching. This method allows direct upload of the web images as they are being viewed in TARA, and image cropping, rotation, addition of description and tagging at the point of upload using the Flock browser's special features. The usual Flickr facilities may be used as required: addition of notes to image, creation of 'sets', creation of slideshows, facility for comments by viewers/students, restrictions on access. There's an even faster way to do this: downloading Bill Conan's handy Firefox extension allows you to right-click an image in TARA (or any website), and send it straight to your Flickr account.

The advantage is simple and pretty basic: a learning resource is built 'on-the-fly' as a lecturer browses images in TARA. The Flickr slideshow link may be subsequently added to WebCT & Moodle courses and deposited in the NDLR as a reusable learning object. Of course, there are more high-tech/better ways to achieve this kind of thing - this is just a zero-cost start for us to explore the spaces within and between these systems. (The demo is for the TCD School of Histories and Humanities Digital Image Project).

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Scientific Publishing in the European Research Area: Access, Dissemination and Preservation in the Digital Age

On 15 and 16 February 2007 the European Commission will host a conference in Brussels on scientific publication issues.The goal of the conference is to bring together stakeholders concerned with access, dissemination and preservation issues in connection with scientific publication and data in an effort to provide policy options for scientific publishing under FP7 and in the European Research Area. Both the Commissioner for Science and Research, Mr. Poto─Źnik and the Commissioner for Information Society and Media, Ms. Reding will be speaking at the event.

Research - Science and Society

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Monday, February 5, 2007

GSU Research Skills Day 7 February 2007, 10am-4pm GMB

The Graduate Students' Union Research Day will be held on the seventh of February, next Wednesday. There will be various interactive workshops held in the GMB during the day. Open Access and TARA are amongst the topics to be covered in 'The Research Support System and Publishing' at 2.00pm. Further information

Developing a Research Culture and Research Capacity - School of Nursing and Midwifery Research Seminar Meeting

Round table Discussion: Maximizing your research impact for staff and research students.
Speakers: Niamh Brennan and Andy Watson
6th February 07 13.00-14.00
For further information please contact: School of Nursing and Midwifery, e-mail: or by phone: 01 896 2692

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

EURAB proposes making open access obligatory for FP7 research

The European Research Advisory Board (EURAB)
has published its Report and Recommendations on "Scientific Publication: policy on open access" (December 2006). Here's the press release. Professor Jane Grimson (School of Computer Science and Statistics and former Vice-Provost, Trinity College Dublin) chaired the EURAB Working Group responsible for the report.

Comments on EURAB's recommendations and proposed mandate by advocates of Open Access Peter Suber and Steve Harnad have been very positive.

Read the EURAB recommendations in full here.

European petition for guaranteed public access to publicly-funded research results

A group of European organisations has launched a petition to the European Commission calling on it to support public access to research outputs shortly after their publication, guaranteeing open access to publicly funded research.

Organised by SPARC Europe, JISC, SURF, the German Research Foundation (DFG) and Denmark's Electronic Research Library (DEFF), the petition urges the Commission to follow the lead of other research funding agencies in mandating the publication of articles arising from EC-related funding after a given time period in open access archives. It also calls on the Commission to explore a European-wide approach to policies and practices surrounding the development of digital repositories as a means of making more visible the fruits of European research and maximising the return on public investment in research.

For further information on the petition, and to sign it, please go to: EC petition

Monday, January 29, 2007

Trinity's Access to Research Archive (TARA)

Trinity's Access to Research Archive (TARA) is an open access repository containing scholarly publications, electronic theses, images, 'grey literature' and e-publishing outputs of Trinity College Dublin.