Open Access: What Every Researcher Should Know

Staff Writer | Scholarly Commons | December 10, 2012

Recently, a movement has grown up around the issue of open access to scholarly research. It’s likely that the debate surrounding this movement will have a profound effect on how the web is used for scholarly communications in the future. Open access advocates, like those involved in the Right to Research Coalition, seek to make academic research freely available to everyone regardless of financial or geographic boundaries. The Right to Research Coalition argues that open access to academic research can help solve three major problems (1) :

1. Rising costs have placed many journals out of financial reach for many institutions: Journal costs (as well as the number of journals) have risen exponentially over the past 30 years. At present, many journals cost thousands of dollars per annual subscription. This situation has put a strain on academic libraries and made access virtually impossible for individuals who aren’t affiliated with an elite university...