The League of European Research Universities (LERU), the association of 21 research-intensive universities of which the UvA has been a member since 2006, is calling on researchers to sign a statement urging the European Commission and the EU to move forward on Open Access.
European universities pay publishers a significant share of their university budget – money which cannot be spent on education or research. As Harvard University already denounced in 2012, these costs are becoming ‘fiscally unsustainable and academically restrictive’ for many universities. Prof. Kurt Deketelaere, Secretary-General of LERU, calls on the European Commission and the forthcoming Dutch EU Presidency to work with all stakeholders involved to make Open Access publishing a reality.
The UvA supports Open Access publishing, as it makes scientific results accessible to parties outside academia, including professionals in healthcare, education and business and other interested parties. Open Access publications are also easier to find, are cited more often and have a wider scientific reach, as they are also available researchers in developing countries and at universities that cannot afford the prohibitive licensing fees charged by scientific publishers. Open Access publishing practices also contribute to the transparency of scientific research. The UvA included Open Access as a key objective in its Strategic Plan for 2015-2020.