“In February 2020, CESAER published a position paper (CESAER, 2020) expressing its support for further strengthening of Open Science and Open Access in Horizon Europe. The importance of Open Access publishing of conference materials was explicitly mentioned due to its importance to universities of science & technology (S&T). As a follow-up to this position, this paper explores the current workflows around making conference papers in the Engineering disciplines openly available at a number of CESAER Member institutions. Recent initiatives aimed to make Open Access the default scholarly communications standard (e.g. the Plan S initiative) have mostly put emphasis on journal research articles, but conference papers and proceedings are also a key research output at the universities of S&T united in CESAER. This papers explores how large the fraction of conference papers is against the total number of research outputs, how often they are being published Open Access and what actions may be envisioned to increase their accessibility and mid- and long-term visibility….”
“While the CWTS Leiden ranking has been available since 2011/2012, it is only in 2019 that a first attempt was made at ranking institutions by Open Access-related indicators. This was due to the arrival of Unpaywall as a tool to measure openly available institutional research outputs – either via the Green or the Gold OA routes – for a specific institution.
The CWTS Leiden ranking by percentage of the institutional research output published Open Access effectively meant the first opportunity for institutions worldwide to be ranked by the depth of their Open Access implementation strategies brushing aside aspects like their size. This provided an interesting way to map the progress of CESAER Member institutions that were part of the Task Force Open Science 2020-2021 Open Access Working Group (OAWG) towards the objective stated by Plan S of achieving 100% Open Access of research outputs.
The OAWG then set out to map the situation of the Member institutions represented in it on this Open Access ranking and to track their evolution on subsequent editions of this ranking. The idea behind this analysis was not so much to introduce an element of competition across institutions but to explore whether progress was taking place in the percentage of openly available institutional research outputs year on year.
The results of this analysis – shown in figures within this paper for the 2019, 2020 and 2021 editions – show strong differences across Member institutions that are part of the OAWG. From internal discussions within the group, it became evident that these differences could be explained through a number of factors that contributed to a successful Open Access implementation at an institutional level. This provided the basis for this work.
The document identifies four key factors that contribute to a successful OA implementation at institutions, and hence to achieving a good position on the CWTS Leiden ranking for Open Access. These factors are:
• Open Access policies. This aspect is highlighted as the key driver for a successful OA implementation: high-ranked institutions typically implement strong OA policies, whereas low-ranked ones often lack a specific policy beyond the (common) one issued by the European Commission for its framework programmes.
• Institutional system configuration (repositories and/or current research information system (CRIS) systems). The way institutional systems support OA implementation are configured is also a critical element for a high ranking. High-ranked institutions within the OAWG often have an interconnected institutional repository and a CRIS. Other institutions only operate a repository and some have neither.
• Institutional research support staff. A strong OA policy and an adequately configured set of institutional systems may not be enough to guarantee a successful OA implementation if the research support staff behind such work is not numerous or well-trained enough.
• Open Access advocacy strategies. One of the key areas of activity for such staff is the communication with researchers to highlight the relevance of Open Access implementation at a given institution and to provide the required support workflows….”
“CESAER, COAR and LIBER welcome the strong focus of the European Commission towards a A Europe fit for the digital age as part of its priorities from 2019 to 2024. We are convinced that the importance of research and education needs a strong focus within these initiatives and call upon the EU institutions to (i) acknowledge the unique position of universities and other research performing organisations in the provision of digital services and infrastructure directed towards the common good and (ii) provide for an overarching legal framework excluding university and research related repositories and corresponding infrastructures from market-oriented EU legislation, in order to prevent any unintended collateral damage from current and future EU legislation aimed at commercial players….
While we understand that the aim of these initiatives is to modernise legislation in a digital age for the good of society, we are concerned that certain aspects of them will negatively impact the research and education sectors, as they conflict with key notions of scientific collaboration, open science, and knowledge-based societies….
It is important to ensure that the knowledge sector does not suffer unintended consequences and collateral damage in current and future market-oriented EU legislation. On the contrary, research and education sectors must be empowered to assume responsibilities in creating a Europe fit for the digital age built on scientific knowledge and learning.”
“On 25 May 2021, more than 880 universities and research-performing and research-funding organisations united within CESAER, EUA and Science Europe call on all publishers to stop requiring researchers to sign over their rights and to end the use of restrictions and embargoes. The joint statement, signed by the presidents of the three organisations, is a strong show of support for Open Science and Open Access.
The statement expresses deep concern regarding the unclear practices of some publishers, in particular the examples recently reported by cOAlition S, that complicate and confuse matters for researchers. The organisations urge publishers to reconsider their position and modernise their approaches in a way that fully respects researchers’ rights, including sharing their peer-reviewed research findings without restrictions or embargoes.
Notably, the statement declares that researchers who wish to deposit their author-accepted manuscript in a repository with an open license (e.g. CC BY), and without any embargo, must be able to do so.
Currently, publishers commonly require authors to sign exclusive publishing agreements that restrict what authors can do with their research findings. The statement urges this outdated system to be replaced and supports a diversity of models for the open dissemination of research for the greater benefit of society….”
“We are especially concerned by the unclear and opaque communication and practices of some publishers as reported by cOAlition S. Such an approach complicates and confuses matters for researchers, impeding progress towards a scholarly communication system based on Open Access to research outputs. We urge those publishers to reconsider their position and modernise, ensuring they play their part in providing fair and transparent conditions for authors. These should fully respect researchers’ rights, including the right to share their peer-reviewed research findings without restrictions or embargoes. If a publisher or platform chooses to take the stance of requiring authors to sign away their rights, they should clearly and publicly state this to ensure that researchers make informed choices. More broadly, the standard position of platforms and publishers should be to empower researchers to publish their findings (including data and digital assets) while retaining their rights. Researchers who wish to deposit their author-accepted manuscript in a repository with an open license (e.g. CC BY), and without any embargo, must be able to do so….”
“Recalling our recent position Open Access in Horizon Europe, the leading universities of science and technology united in CESAER remain strong supporters of open science and open access to scientific publications.
We value the leadership that the European Commission and the European Research Council (ERC) have shown on these important topics, including in their support of Plan S which we also fully support.
It was therefore with surprise that we learned of the ERC Scientific Council’s abrupt withdrawal of their support from Plan S, despite their support since its inception, which was also reiterated last year.
With this letter, I reiterate our association’s strong support for achieving full and immediate open access. We firmly believe that Plan S is an important step towards achieving this goal, as expressed in our position Open Access in Horizon Europe.
We call upon the European Commission to continue their leadership in open science and open access, and we look forward to the full implementation of Plan S in the model grant agreement for Horizon Europe….”
“Recalling our position paper ‘CESAER going towards Open Science’ and ‘Roadmap towards Open Access’, the universities of science and technology united in CESAER are proponents for open science and open access to scientific publications. We support the transition towards making open science the modus operandi in Horizon Europe. We acknowledge the laudable efforts by cOAlition S – a group of national research funding organisations with the support of the European Commission and the European Research Council – to ensure immediate open access to scientific publications and we support ‘Plan S’. In line with our previous statements and our mission, aims and values, we herewith present our advanced position on open access in Horizon Europe.
We support the principles behind Plan S stating that researchers (or their universities) should retain full rights to their scholarly works. For example, any ‘copyright transfer agreement’ where researchers and universities hand over their rights (for their scholarly work or their research data) must be avoided. The retention of rights by researchers and universities is vital as it enables the full utilisation of research outcomes in diverse efforts across all areas of research, education and innovation. We further note the ongoing developments across Europe on copyright laws with open access amendments, such as the Dutch Taverne Amendment and similar efforts in Belgium, Germany, France and other countries. These developments help safeguard the rights of researchers and universities, and we therefore strongly encourage their further deployment. We call on the European Commission to propose EU legislation to give researchers the nonwaivable legal right to share publicly funded and peer-reviewed research findings without embargoes….”
For the same doc in another file format, see