Faculty votes for Access

Sean Sauro, Staff Writer

With increasing prices for scholarly journal subscriptions, many university libraries are finding it harder to acquire new research material.

Members of the University of Pittsburgh Open Access Task Force said  they may have a solution to this problem.

A Task Force report said open access will allow copyright owners to make their works available publicly, without limiting access to subscribers or purchasers of the material.

The report also suggested that faculty members should be required to use an open access repository.

Pitt-Johnstown Faculty Senate Secretary Kristen Majocha said the senate voted unanimously in January to support the open access requirement for faculty publications of research.

She also said that some faculty members were concerned about publishers not allowing posting of certain articles to maintain their copyright on the material. In this case, a unanimously issued waiver would have to be obtained.

Majocha said the uploading of material to a database will rely solely on the authors’ cooperation.

“The policy will not be policed, but will work on a sort of honors system,” Majocha said.

Despite these concerns, Tim Deliyannides, a university scholarly communications and publishing director, said the policy will benefit authors and researchers alike.

“The policy will increase visibility of the author’s research with no barriers of price or subscription.”

This policy is based on a similar policy enforced at Massachusetts Institute of Technology libraries which has been successful. The university repository is at [email protected] where almost six thousand documents have been filed.