European Consultation on Scientific Information in the digital age

The European Commission (EC) has announced a consultation on ‘scientific information in the digital age’. The consultation is running until 9th September 2011 so if you’re as interested in open access and open data as we are then the EC wants to hear your opinion on the following issues:

– how scientific articles could become more accessible to researchers and society at large

– how research data can be made widely available and how it could be re-used

– how permanent access to digital content can be ensured and what barriers are preventing the preservation of scientific output

The EC is hoping to push for improved knowledge circulation in the European research area and this initiative is being spearheaded by Commissioner for Research and Innovation, Máire Geoghegan-Quinn and Vice President for the Digital Agenda Neelie Kroes, who reiterated the importance of open access in the following statement:

“The results of publicly funded research should be circulated as widely as possible as a matter of principle. The broad dissemination of knowledge, within the European Research Area and beyond, is a key driver of progress in research and innovation, and thus for jobs and growth in Europe. Our vision is Open Access to scientific information so that all of us benefit as much as possible from investments in science. To accelerate scientific progress, but also for education, for innovation and for other creative re-use. For the same reason we must preserve scientific records for future generations”.

This Consultation will result in a Communication and a Recommendation on the access to and preservation of scientific literature, specifically with regards to research funded by the EU. Europe has always been a leader in scientific innovation and the EC feels that this is progress is aided by fast and easy access to scientific information, something that open access publishing contributes to greatly.

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