White House’s open-access directive scrambles long-entrenched models | STAT: Reporting from the frontiers of health and medicine

by Brittany Tang

In August, the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy released a memo directing all federal agencies to form plans to make all federally funded research publications and data publicly available without embargo by the end of 2025.

Most people who heard the news likely envisioned making a cup of coffee on Jan. 1, 2026, opening up JAMA’s or Nature’s website, and being able to read any article for free.

But that’s almost certainly not going to happen.

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Everything Hertz: 161: The memo (with Brian Nosek)

“Dan and James are joined by Brian Nosek (Co-founder and Executive Director of the Center for Open Science) to discuss the recent White House Office of Science Technology & Policy memo ensuring free, immediate, and equitable access to federally funded research. They also cover the implications of this memo for scientific publishing, as well as the mechanics of culture change in science….”

No evidence that mandatory open data policies increase error correction | Nature Ecology & Evolution

Berberi, I., Roche, D.G. No evidence that mandatory open data policies increase error correction. Nat Ecol Evol (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41559-022-01879-9

Preprint: https://doi.org/10.31222/osf.io/k8ver

Abstract: Using a database of open data policies for 199 journals in ecology and evolution, we found no detectable link between data sharing requirements and article retractions or corrections. Despite the potential for open data to facilitate error detection, poorly archived datasets, the absence of open code and the stigma associated with correcting or retracting articles probably stymie error correction. Requiring code alongside data and destigmatizing error correction among authors and journal editors could increase the effectiveness of open data policies at helping science self-correct.

 

Subscribe-to-Open Community of Practice Statement on the OSTP ‘Nelson Memo’

The Subscribe to Open (S2O) Community of Practice is an informal collective of over forty pro-open publishers, libraries, consortia, funders, service providers, and other stakeholders committed to providing equitable and economically sustainable OA publishing. The S2O Community of Practice welcomes the US Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) memorandum on ensuring free, immediate, and equitable access to federally funded research.

Episode 28: The Politics of Open Access, Alzheimer’s Research, and Ghost Work ft. Mary Gray — Shobita Parthasarathy

“It’s a new season of The Received Wisdom!! After their partial summer hiatus, Shobita and Jack discuss the fraud allegations that are rocking the foundations of what we know about Alzheimer’s Disease, and the Biden Administration’s directive to make freely available all publications based on federally funded research. And, they chat with Macarthur Fellow Mary Gray about the “ghost workers” behind digital technologies and supposedly artificial intelligence. Gray is Senior Principal Researcher at Microsoft Research, Faculty Associate at Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, and faculty in the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering with affiliations in Anthropology and Gender Studies at Indiana University….

1. Why was the amyloid plaque hypothesis for Alzheimer’s so successful?

2. What are the potential drawbacks and limitations to the US government’s adoption of an open access publication policy?

3. What is ghost work?

4. Why can’t the problem of content moderation be solved solely through computation, and more generally computer science and engineering? What insights can deep understanding of the social dimensions of science and technology provide?

5. What don’t we think of ghost workers as experts? How might reframing it in that way change the discussion? What public policy options might it reveal?

6. How do Gray and Suri categorize different types of ghost work? ”

 

Asia tipped to follow US lead on open access | Times Higher Education (THE)

“Asian research powerhouses will introduce open access (OA) mandates within the next “two to three” years, experts have predicted, in the wake of last month’s landmark order by the Biden administration.

Under the US decision, the published results of federally funded research must be made immediately and freely available to readers, starting from 2025. This follows the introduction of similar rules across Europe and the UK, spearheaded by the Plan S initiative.

Home to four of the top 10 research-producing countries – China, Japan, South Korea and India – Asia now appears poised to become the next battleground….”

New rule expands public access to federally funded research

“Public access to publicly funded research is an obvious social good,” said Donna Hayward, interim university librarian and dean of libraries. She said the new directive is a further step in a positive direction that’s been gaining momentum in the last decade.

“Of course, these policy changes will require adjustments to the ways some U-M researchers manage and publish their findings,” she said. “Fortunately, the library has quite a bit of expertise and infrastructure to help people prepare for and navigate the new standards and requirements.”

[Eril-l] Subscribe-to-Open Community of Practice Statement on the OSTP ‘Nelson Memo’

“The Subscribe to Open (S2O) Community of Practice is an informal collective of over forty pro-open publishers, libraries, consortia, funders, service providers, and other stakeholders committed to providing equitable and economically sustainable OA publishing. The S2O Community of Practice welcomes the US Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) memorandum on ensuring free, immediate, and equitable access to federally funded research.

Achieving OSTP’s objectives will require multiple economic models, not just those that rely on article processing charges. Subscribe to Open is capable of opening a vast corpus of research output across all disciplines, including the social sciences and humanities, from society, nonprofit, university, and commercial publishers.
Subscribe to Open uses established market processes and accepted incentive structures to coordinate support for all types of open scholarship, including journals and monographs. S2O motivates subscribers to participate by making OA contingent on their ongoing support, in combination with exclusive incentives that make participation in their economic self-interest. The model distributes open access support costs broadly and equitably by converting subscriptions into stable, cost-neutral sources of open support.

The members of the S2O community are eager to engage with US federal funding agencies to identify policies that encourage varied, robust, and equitable economic models for disseminating open research….”

Remarks by President Biden on the Cancer Moonshot Initiative – The White House

“When I led the Cancer Moonshot as Vice President, one of the biggest issues I talked about was how federally funded cancer researchers were not sharing their results with their peers or the public because they wanted to have the answer. You all know it.

As I mentioned earlier, we made federally funded cancer research more available to any patient, to any doctor anywhere for free.

And today, as President, we’re making sure that transparency applies to all federally funded science beyond just cancer….”

Taylor & Francis welcomes OSTP’s memorandum on Ensuring Free, Immediate, and Equitable Access to Federally Funded Research – Taylor & Francis Newsroom

At Taylor & Francis, we extend our support to the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) for its aims to make all federally funded research and subsequent data publicly available as soon as it has been published.

AAA’s Response to OSTP Public Accessibility Memo – News – Stay Informed

“The American Anthropological Association (AAA) supports the basic objective of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy’s (OSTP’s) recent decision to make federally funded research freely available without embargo. AAA has been publishing scholarly content since 1889 and has always advocated for equitable access to research and data while maintaining an inclusive and sustainable publishing program….

AAA also has a flexible reuse policy as part of its author agreement. Authors can use the published article of record for educational or other scholarly purposes at the author’s own institution or company and/or place the accepted, post peer-review manuscript on a personal, institutional, or company website or on a non-commercial, discipline-specific public server….”

Who’ll pay for public access to federally funded research?

“The White House painted an incomplete economic picture of its new policy for free, immediate access to research produced with federal grants. Will publishers adapt their business models to comply, or will scholars be on the hook?…”

Guest Post – Quantifying the Impact of the OSTP Policy – The Scholarly Kitchen

“Here, I analyse data from the Web of Science (journal indexes of the Core Collection: SCIE, SSCI, AHCI, and ESCI) in order to (a) assess the current gold-OA landscape across regions and (b) quantify the potential impact of the policy.

The policy affects about 31% of US papers and 7% of papers published globally. Some of the papers in scope are already published in a gold-OA format (33%). Converting all underlying papers to a gold-OA format will be a significant contribution toward the global transition to OA (my working assumption for these estimates posits that ¾ of the papers that are not currently gold-OA, will turn gold-OA as a result of the policy). Yet the true impact of the policy may be greater than these numbers imply, given that several of the leading, mostly paywalled scholarly titles (Nature, Science,Cell, PNAS) get more than 40% of their papers from US, federally-funded research….”

A Critical Examination of the OSTP Memo | By Every Means Necessary

by Dave Ghamandi, also available via https://doi.org/10.17613/ejk2-ys30

“Hide nothing from the masses of our people. Tell no lies. Expose lies whenever they are told. Mask no difficulties, mistakes, failures. Claim no easy victories . . .”

-Amilcar Cabral

INTRODUCTION

Open access (OA) takes many forms. It can be the product of voluntary associations that are cooperative and mutually supportive. It can result from the “free market,” where Springer Nature charges an $11,000+ article processing charge (APC) to make a single article OA. It can also be produced through a regulatory-compliance-and-punishment system. The latter is what’s found in the new Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) memo issued on August 25, 2022.[1] The OSTP’s stated aims in the memo give anti-imperialists much to be concerned about, especially as the biden administration previously justified increasing public access to federally-funded research as a way of battling China in a new Cold War. Those of us in the belly of the beast—the u.s. empire—have an obligation to develop, share, and act upon a critical analysis of the OSTP memo. This analysis is rooted in the historical and present-day evidence that the executive branch manages a corporately-controlled state and is not accustomed to giving gifts to the working class. I attempt to explain and predict in this essay.

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