Open Access to Scientific Publications – An Analysis of the Barriers to Change?

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Information Research, 2004, Vol.9, No.2, paper 170

Title: Open Access to Scientific Publications – An Analysis of the Barriers to Change?
Author: Björk, Bo-Christer
Publisher: University of Lund Library
Date: 2004
Language: eng
Abstract: One of the effects of the Internet is that the dissemination of scientific publications in a few years has migrated to electronic formats. The basic business practices between libraries and publishers for selling and buying the content, however, have not changed much. In protest against the high subscription prices of mainstream publishers, scientists have started Open Access (OA) journals and e-print repositories, which distribute scientific information freely. Despite widespread agreement among academics that OA would be the optimal distribution mode for publicly financed research results, such channels still constitute only a marginal phenomenon in the global scholarly communication system. This paper discusses, in view of the experiences of the last ten years, the many barriers hindering a rapid proliferation of Open Access. The discussion is structured according to the main OA channels; peer-reviewed journals for primary publishing, subject- specific and institutional repositories for secondary parallel publishing. It also discusses the types of barriers, which can be classified as consisting of the legal framework, the information technology infrastructure, business models, indexing services and standards, the academic reward system, marketing, and critical mass.
Subject: Open Access
Scientific publishing

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