[Oa-italia] Fwd: the perception that OA through repositories is not an alternative to comprehensive OA through....

Maria Cassella maria.cassella a unito.it
Ven 28 Set 2012 15:15:55 CEST

giro alla lista questo bel messaggio di Guedon, sempre sulla 
complementarità delle due strade.
si parla di sostenibilità, di eliminare le barrieire e le competizioni, 
di aggregazione ed armonizzazione. Ognuno poi trarra' le proprie 

-------- Messaggio originale --------
Oggetto: 	he perception that OA through repositories is not an 
alternative to comprehensive OA through....
Data: 	Thu, 27 Sep 2012 19:22:25 -0400
Mittente: 	LIBLICENSE <liblicense a GMAIL.COM>
Rispondi-a: 	LibLicense-L Discussion Forum <LIBLICENSE-L a listserv.crl.edu>
A: 	<LIBLICENSE-L a listserv.crl.edu>

From: "Guédon Jean-Claude"<jean.claude.guedon a umontreal.ca>
Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2012 11:41:22 -0400

Perhaps to tweak Fred's analysis a bit, I would say:

1. Obviously repositories are sustainable, highly sustainable: they
are as sustainable as the libraries that support them. They are one of
the two main roads to achieve OA.

2. OA journals face a sustainability issue only if they are taken to
be in a category where cost-recovery is unavoidable. In other words,
more is asked of journals than of repositories that are supported by
libraries. More is also asked of journals than is asked of research
itself. Research itself is subsidized and is basically unsustainable
in strict economic terms. If journals are considered to be part of the
research process (as they are), then the sustainability issue is there
only because some journal producers choose to put themselves in this
kind of position, be they for, or not-for, profit. Otherwise, they are
and can be wrapped into research budgets. At the end of the day, OA
journals form the other road to achieve OA.

3. Making one road compete with the other is silly: social actors in
various positions simply do the best they can with the perception they
have, given their position. Our task is not to divide and compete; our
task is to aggregate and harmonize to the extent possible. We all
share the OA objective; so let us complement each other, support each
other, and work in a distributed way.

Jean-Claude Guédon

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Frederick Friend<ucylfjf a ucl.ac.uk>
Date: Tue, Sep 25, 2012 at 6:04 PM


It is time for supporters of OA through repositories to respond to the
unfair comparisons being made between repositories and OA journals as a
long-term route to open access. The comparisons appear to be made in terms
of sustainability of the two routes to open access, the quality of content
available through the two routes, and the push for a comprehensive
solution. What follows is not written from an anti-publisher nor an anti-OA
journal viewpoint, but is intended to make a case for a fair and
even-handed approach.


The view that the journal route to OA is more sustainable than the
repository route to OA flies in the face of objective studies of costs of
various research communication models, which conclude that repository
deposit and access provide a more cost-effective route to OA than
publication in journals. How can a more expensive solution be more
sustainable than a cheaper option in the long-term? Even supporters of open
access journals seem to accept that additional funding is required for open
access journals converted from subscription journals, and this view has
been accepted by the UK Government in the announcement of an extra £10
million to support open access on the journal model. Can the supporters of
open access journals please come clean and say for how many years such an
extra sum will be required before OA journals become sustainable? How is
such a subsidy to be justified to the UK taxpayer when a cheaper OA
alternative is available?

The hope that open access journals will be cheaper and therefore more
sustainable than repositories appears to be based upon a hope of low author
publication charges. Some open access publishers certainly set low
publication charges, but the journals with low charges are by and large not
those journals in which authors choose to publish as first choice. The most
important journals are owned by publishers with a reputation for charging
high subscription prices and those publishers are likely to continue a
high-price policy into the OA era in order to maintain their profits or
surpluses. In theory competition for authors should lower the cost of
author publication charges but in practice the power in the
author-publisher relationship lies with the publishers of the most
important journals. Authors are more desperate to publish in such journals
than the publishers are to secure authors.

Suggestions have been made that the repository route to OA is unsustainable
but no evidence has been produced to support that contention. The large
repositories - such as arXiv - have been in operation for many years and
have proved themselves to be sustainable. The institutional repositories
are smaller and have not been around as long as the big subject
repositories, but many of the institutions running repositories have been
around for hundreds of years. The large research institutions have enough
income and enough commitment to making their research output available to
ensure that their repositories are sustainable. So where does this view
that repositories are unsustainable come from?

*2.*       *QUALITY*

A second criticism of the repository route to OA has been that repository
content is of low quality. Do authors not find this criticism insulting and
ask why the final draft of their journal article should be considered of
low quality when the version published in a journal with only minor changes
to the final draft is considered to be of the highest quality? Peer review
and copy-editing are valuable but rarely make a dramatic difference to the
quality of the article. And there is no reason in principle why peer review
and an equivalent to copy-editing should not be applied to the author's
final version deposited in a repository. After all a journal's peer
reviewers are unpaid members of the academic community and copy-editing is
similar to skills many researchers already employ in using the raw
materials of research. The perception of the quality of repository content
could be improved through a system of kite-marks linking the repository
item to previous work by the author and the research assessment grading of
the author's department.

More fundamentally the criticism of repositories as allegedly containing
low-quality content appears to be based upon a way of working which goes
back to the paper era. Electronic systems have made copy-editing less of a
drudge, and intelligent electronic systems can help to identify possible
errors of substance. No longer can publishers claim to have a monopoly on
quality control for research outputs.


There seems to be a view that open access journals provide the only route
to a comprehensive OA world and that repositories can never be
comprehensive in their holdings of research content. This view appears to
be based upon a view that all countries will follow the UK Government's
lead and require publication in open access journals. Fortunately for the
future of open access there is no sign that the OA journal model will be
followed by all researchers in all countries in the world. A single
world-wide model is highly unlikely to be supported by so many disparate
research communities, even though they collaborate much more than they used

By contrast the large subject repositories have been remarkably successful
in securing comprehensive collections of research articles in their
disciplines. Institutional repositories are newer and not comprehensive at
present, but a growing number of institutions are introducing deposit
policies for their researchers and have the potential to make 100% of their
research outputs available on open access. If any OA model has the
potential to become adopted world-wide it is the repository model rather
than the OA journal model, although both will co-exist for a long time.

Fred Friend

Honorary Director Scholarly Communication UCL

-------------- parte successiva --------------
Un allegato HTML è stato rimosso...
URL: <http://liste.cineca.it/pipermail/oa-italia/attachments/20120928/3a349ca1/attachment.html>

Maggiori informazioni sulla lista OA-Italia