Leaders call for OA to agricultural info. in India

T. V. Padma, Agricultural research ‘should be open access’, SciDev.Net, September 29, 2009.

Providing open access to agricultural research in India will help drive development and reduce poverty, says Bruce Alberts, editor-in-chief of Science. …

He was speaking at a meeting on open access in agriculture, held at the International Centre for Crop Research for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), Hyderabad, this month (7–8 September). …

Stevan Harnad, Canada research chair in cognitive sciences at the University of Montreal, Quebec, pointed out at the meeting that universities and libraries subscribe to only a fraction of the roughly 25,000 peer-reviewed journals that are published worldwide, in all languages and all disciplines.

This means “research is having only a fraction of its potential usage and impact”.

India’s Agricultural Research Service Scientists’ Forum (ARSSF) agrees that the country’s crop research journals should be made open access. Sridhar Gutam, ARSSF joint secretary, told SciDev.Net that it is time the National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS) and Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) took a policy decision on open access journals.

In January, India launched ‘AgroPedia‘, an online repository of agricultural information.

Gutam says that there is a broad understanding among the ICRISAT meeting participants that an open access agricultural research publications repository will be created within AgroPedia, where participants will be able to deposit their research articles.