Friday, March 29, 2013

French Scholars Say ‘Oui’ to Open Access

On 15 March sixty senior French humanities and social sciences academics published a statement in Le Monde expressing support of open access. The Time Higher Education provides an overview of the statement.

. . . . The signatories, who include university presidents, librarians and journal editors, warn that if the humanities and social sciences were to opt out of wider moves towards open access they “would become isolated and ultimately extinct”. The statement, titled “Who Is Afraid of Open Access?”, was published on 15 March and has received more than 2,000 endorsements on a dedicated website, I love open access . . . .
It says open access has the potential to “take knowledge out of silos” and allow it to play its “pivotal role” in the “collective growth” of society. 
The statement also highlights the success of open access in Latin America, which it says demonstrates its potential to break the dominance of English-language journals, enabling a “plurality of viewpoints, modes of publication, scientific paradigms, and languages”. 
To fear open access is “to commit oneself to a narrow - and, in fact, erroneous - vision of the future”, it says. “The humanities and social sciences can be at the forefront of this opening movement precisely because there is an increasing social demand for their research results.”

Extracts from the actual statement in Le Monde:
. . . . Qui a peur de l'accès ouvert ? L'accès privatif bride la dissémination des idées et est inadapté aux nouveaux paradigmes offerts par le numérique. Il est temps de voir dans le Web une formidable occasion dans le domaine de l'innovation, de la diffusion des savoirs et de l'émergence de nouvelles idées. 
Nous n'avons pas peur de l'accès ouvert. Sortir les savoirs des silos et des frontières des campus, c'est les ouvrir à tous, c'est reconnaître à la connaissance un rôle moteur dans nos sociétés, c'est ouvrir des perspectives d'enrichissement collectif. . . . 

No comments: