27 December 2007

Open Access's Big Win

Now here's a nice way to end the year - and to start the next:

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.

That's just been signed into law in the US, and even though the choice of 12 rather than six months is slightly pusillanimous, it's still a huge win for open access in the US. It will also have a knock-on effect around the world, as open access to publicly-funded research starts to become the norm.

For more details see Peter Suber's post, with links to more details and background.

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