Publicly funded scientific research goes public

This is more or less a bit outdated news but it’s still great.

European Union ministers have agreed to make a huge amount of scientific research in the region available free of charge by 2020. The move will open up publicly funded papers and articles to a wide audience, helping individuals and businesses to make use of scientific insight. They call it Open Access and it will change a lot in the education sector.

Open access means that scientific publications on the results of research supported by public and public-private funds must be freely accessible to everyone. That is not yet the case. The results of publicly funded research are currently not accessible to people outside universities and knowledge institutions. As a result, teachers, doctors and entrepreneurs do not have access to the latest scientific insights that are so relevant to their work, and universities have to take out expensive subscriptions with publishers to gain access to publications.

From 2020, all scientific publications on the results of publicly funded research must be freely available. It also must be able to optimally reuse research data. To achieve that, the data must be made accessible, unless there are well-founded reasons for not doing so, for example intellectual property rights or security or privacy issues.