Sunday, July 5, 2009

Federal Research Public Access Act Reintroduced

Last week Senators Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) and John Cornyn (R-TX) reintroduced the Federal Research Public Access Act (FRPAA), a bill to ensure free, timely, online access to the published results of research funded by eleven U.S. federal agencies. The Alliance for Taxpayer Access – ATA (BC Library is a member) applauds this bill that promotes open access to vast amounts of federally funded research. From ATA’s recent press release:

FRPAA would require those agencies with annual extramural research budgets of $100 million or more to provide the public with online access to research manuscripts stemming from such funding no later than six months after publication in a peer-reviewed journal. The bill gives individual agencies flexibility in choosing the location of the digital repository to house this content, as long as the repositories meet conditions for interoperability and public accessibility, and have provisions for long-term archiving. . . .

The bill covers unclassified research funded by agencies including: Department of Agriculture, Department of Commerce, Department of Defense, Department of Education, Department of Energy, Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Transportation, Environmental Protection Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and the National Science Foundation. . . .

“We welcome the introduction of this landmark legislation,” added Heather Joseph, spokesperson for the Alliance and Executive Director of SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition). This bill reflects the recognition that expanded access to research results will benefit all citizens. Every member of the public has a stake in this research. Whether it is understanding climate change, developing renewable energy resources, or helping to halt a flu pandemic, these research results are of critical value to every American taxpayer. We look forward to working with the wide coalition of supporters of public access to see this legislation come to fruition.”

The Alliance for Taxpayer Access calls on organizations and individuals to write in support of the bill through the Web site at http://www.taxpayeraccess.org.

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