Sunday, October 21, 2007

Canadian Library Association congratulates CIHR on its Open Access Policy

The Canadian Library Association posted its congratulatory letter to Dr. Alan Bernstein, President of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, on the CIHR Policy on Access to Research Outputs. Thanks to CLA and President Dr. Alvin Schrader for yet another example of Canadian Leadership in the Open Access Movement.

Here is the text of the letter:

Dr. Alan Bernstein
President, Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Dear Dr. Bernstein,

Re: CIHR Open Access to Research Outputs Policy

Please accept the congratulations of the Canadian Library Association (CLA) on the recent announcement of the Open Access to Research Outputs policy.

The Canadian Library Association (CLA) is Canada’s largest national and broad-based library association, representing the interests of public, academic, school and special libraries, professional librarians and library workers, and all those concerned about enhancing the quality of life of Canadians through information and literacy.

CIHR’s adoption of the Open Access to Research Outputs policy is a significant step in the right direction towards the full and immediate open access to publicly funded research results. It is encouraging to see that “grant recipients must make every effort to ensure that their peer-reviewed research articles are freely available as soon as possible after publication”.

The policy is very generous in its flexibility to researchers and publishers, providing for grant recipients to meet this expectation through self-archiving of the author’s own work, or publishing in an open access journal. This flexibility, and the clarification that article processing fees for open access publishing are eligible expenses under Use of Grant Funds, are more than sufficient to ensure stability in publishing of this research during the transitional period. Inclusion of the Policy Review section is wise, to ensure that the policy moves forward toward full open access, as the publishing industry continues to evolve and adjust to the imperative of ensuring optimal use of research results in the internet environment, which includes provision of open access to research results.

Members of the Canadian Library Association, both as individuals and as organizations, will be helping with this implementation, in many ways. Librarians at research institutions will be educating researchers about the policy, why and how to comply; and librarians at all types of libraries will be helping library users to make good use of this expanded access to the results of CIHR research.

CLA recently adopted a policy of open access of its own, and we wish CIHR every success in its implementation of the Open Access to Research Outputs policy.


Canadian Library Association / Association canadienne des bibliothèques

Alvin Schrader