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Public Policy and the Politics of Open Access

Today, open access (in the form of both self-archiving and open access journals) is routinely discussed and debated at an institutional-level, within research-funding bodies, nationally, and internationally. The debate has moved out of the library and publisher communities to take a more central place in discussions on the 'knowledge economy', return on investment in research, and the nature of e-science. This paper, authored by David C. Prosser from SPARC Europe, looks at some of the public policy drivers that are impacting scholarly communications. It describes the major policy initiatives that are supporting a move to open access.
   
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Open Access to Research and the individual responsibility of researchers

Open archives (the "green road") represent the most efficient way of providing full open access through authors' self-deposits. In this article, Thierry Chanier takes a short tour around the scientific publication world. According to him, though free / open access to research findings have been officially acknowledged, the traditional organisation of scholarly publication runs against the objective of allowing the entire annual set of 2.5 million papers to be freely accessed. Thierry Chanier is professor at the Université de Franche-Comté, France.
   
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From Peer Review to Fear Review

Are data and conclusions reported in peer review journals sound and trustworthy? According to Dr. Elizabeth M. Whelan, we can no longer assume that peer review journals are free of "junk science." Dr. Whelan is president of the American Council on Science and Health.
   
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Tips for Publishing in Scientific Journals

Publications are the means by which scientists publicise their work, and ultimately, it is by their papers that these publications are judged. A string of impressive publications can propel a young scientist to the next academic stage, whereas an insufficient publication record can derail a career. This paper by Katrina Kelner, Deputy Editor, Life Sciences, at Science magazine, is aimed at giving budding scientists a brief idea of what makes a good paper.
   
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Open Access and the Progress of Science

This article by Alma Swan discusses whether our present system of scholarly communication aids the progress of science or gets in the way. According to the article open access model of publishing offers the most promise for advancing science. Swan has more than two decades of experience in medical cell biology research and scholarly publishing. She has served on the faculty of Leicester University and on the staff of Pergamon Press/Elsevier Science, where she was senior managing editor.
   
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