OA is the way of the future

More indications recently that Open Access is the way of the future:

Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) both recently announced OA policies.

From the CAS Press Release:

“CAS said it will require its researchers and graduate students to deposit final, peer-reviewed manuscripts of research articles into the open access repositories of their respective institutes within 12 months of their official publication in academic journals. CAS will also encourage researchers to deposit previously published articles into their respective institutional repositories as well.”

This is important news because China is a growing powerhouse for scientific research output. And CAS & NSFC are two of the major funders in China. An article in Chemistry World today summarizes this well:

“In 2012, Chinese scientists published 186,577 papers in journals indexed by Thomson Reuters Science Citation Index (SCI) database, accounting for 13.9% of the world’s scientific output. More than 100,000 of these were funded by the NSFC. CAS scientists published 18,000 SCI papers in 2012.” [emphasis is mine]

The other indication of which I speak:

The annual meeting of the Global Research Council (GRC) is currently underway in Beijing (coincidence? I think not…). GRC is comprised of the heads of science and engineering funding agencies from around the world. They have just endorsed a ‘state of play’ report on Open Access to publications [more details here].

The OA tipping point was reached long ago perhaps, but academic culture is slow to change. I am coming to believe that mandates, especially from funding agencies, are the only mechanism to compel significant change at a reasonable rate…