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India’s Top Scientific Departments Announces OA Policy

Open-Access-1The two top most scientific departments in India, the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Department of Science and Technology (DST) under the Ministry of Science and Technology had announced jointly the Open Access Policy on 12th December 2014.

The departments are of the opinion that as the funds for research on science and technology are public funds, therefore, the “information and knowledge generated through the use of these funds are made publicly available as son as possible”. However it adds a foot note that information sharing is subject to the “Indian law and IP policies of respective funding agencies and institutions where the research is performed” and the institutions are encouraged to seek IP protection to the research outputs.

The policy states that the departments believe that by the distribution of the research publications freely “is the most effective way of ensuring that the research it funds can be accessed, read and built upon” and  “free, open and digital access of scientific research will ensure percolation of cutting edge research at a rapid pace into higher education curricula, thereby raising the standard of technical and scientific education in the country

As per the policy, all the research articles’s final accepted manuscripts (post-prints) resulting from the DBT/DST funds received from the fiscal year 2012-13 onwards are required to be deposited either in their respective institutional repositories or in the Ministry’s central repositories (dst.sciencecentral.in/ and dbt.sciencecentral.in/) and the harvester (sciencecentral.in) would harvest the full-text and metadata of the publications.

The highlight of the DBT/DST Open Access policy is that while it recognizes “the right of researchers to publish their work in journals of their choice”, it states that “the intrinsic merit of the work, and not the title of the journal in which an author’s work is published, should be considered in making future funding decisions” and the DBT and DST do not recommend the use of journal impact factors either as a surrogate measure of the quality of individual research articles, to assess an individual scientist’s contributions, or in hiring,promotion, or funding decisions“.

This above statements by DBT/DST shows that the departments are in agreement to the The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA) which “intends to halt the practice of correlating the journal impact factor to the merits of a specific scientist’s contributions“.

The Open Access India community is welcomes this Open Access policy and hopes that this step towards Open Access to public funded research would lead to development and adoption of National Open Access Mandate in India and also the policy adds into it all the research outputs (not limited to articles) and shares them freely for the public good.

Introducing Open Access India Ambassadors

The first two proud Ambassadors of the Open Access India are Ms. Sri Amudha S., a full time PhD candidate in Dept. of Library and Information Science, Pondicherry University.  and Mr. Sandeep Rawal, a PhD Scholar, Department of AgronomyCCS Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar.

To take forward the Open Access movement in India and to build the momentum by involving all the stakeholders, the Open Access India had followed the foot steps of OKFN‘s Ambassador Scheme and the Max Planck Society‘s Open Access Ambassadors, and had given call for the Open Access India Ambassador Scheme. By this scheme, the Community would have a network of volunteers in India for advocating Open Access, Open Data and Open Education. More on how to apply Ambassador, please see the post and fill out the form here.

New website for Open Access India

To reach out to the world beyond Facebook, the new website www.openaccessindia.org has been set up. This website would now be officially launched in early 2015 when the Open Access India community of practice would be formally registered as body.

The community is now part of GODAN “an initiative that seeks to support global efforts to make agricultural and nutritional data available, accessible, and usable for unrestricted use worldwide” and had committed itself to work for Open Access, Open Data and Open Education in India.

The future plans form the community is – first formal registration by forming working group and bylaws and then call for membership and formation of executive committee by election.

Call for Participation: OpenCon 2014 Delhi Satellite Event at CSSP, JNU, India, on 25 Nov 2014

OpenCon 2014 Delhi Satellite Event

Date: November 25, 2014, at 14:00 – 17:00

Venue: Room No. 227, CSSP, SSS-1 Building, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi – 110067, India

Registration Fee: Nil

Theme: Open Science, Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data

OpenCon 2014 is the student and early career researcher conference on Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data held during November 2014 at Washington, DC. It was organized by the Right to Research Coalition, SPARC (The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), and an Organizing Committee of students and early career researchers from around the world.

The meeting had convened students and early career researchers from around the world who serve as a powerful catalyst for projects led by the next generation of scholars and researchers to advance OpenCon’s three focus areas—Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data.

OpenCon 2014 Delhi Satellite event is being held in partnership with the main conference (more on OpenCon 2014 here). As it is important to allow more of those interested to participate, this satellite event is being organized locally to reflect the fact that the conversation around these issues can be very different depending on where they’re had.

OpenCon 2014 Delhi will feature leading speakers from across the Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data movements, including a combination of live speakers and videos from the OpenCon 2014 Washington event.

The talks will be interspersed with interactive group discussions themed around the session topic.

Format of the event

OpenCon 2014 Delhi is a half-day event hosted at Centre for Studies in Science Policy (CSSP), Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) by Open Access India in collaboration and support with CSSP, JNU Central Library and Rock Your Paper.

14:00 – 14:15 : Arrival and registration

14:15 – 14:20 : Welcome and Introduction

14:20 – 15:00 : Session 1: Open Access – talks and video session (#227, CSSP)

15:00 – 15:15 : Coffee Break

15:15 – 15:45 : Session 1 group discussions (#227, CSSP)

15:45 – 16:00 : Session 2: Open Education & Open Data – talks and video session (#227, CSSP)

16:00 – 16:15 : Coffee Break

16:15 – 16:45 : Session 2 group discussions (#227, CSSP)

16:45 – 17:00 : Summary and end of day

To secure your place please register for a free ticket – and we look forward to seeing you on the 25th Nov. 2014!

About OpenCon 2014 (Washington main event)

OpenCon 2014 is the student and early career researcher conference on Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data being held on November 15-17, 2014 in Washington, DC. It is organized by the Right to Research Coalition, SPARC (The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), and an Organizing Committee of students and early career researchers from around the world.

The meeting will convene students and early career researchers from around the world and serve as a powerful catalyst for projects led by the next generation of scholars and researchers to advance OpenCon’s three focus areas—Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data.

See the OpenCon2014 website for more details.

Paperity. Keep on top of recent discoveries and never hit a paywall

With the beginning of the new academic year, the first multidisciplinary aggregator of Open Access journals and papers has been launched. Paperity will connect authors with readers, boost dissemination of new discoveries and consolidate academia around open literature.

Right now, Paperity includes over 160,000 articles from 2,000 scholarly journals and growing. The goal of the team is to cover 100% of Open Access literature in 3 years from now. In order to achieve this, Paperity utilizes an original technology for article indexing, designed by Marcin Wojnarski, a data geek from Poland and a medalist of the International Mathematical Olympiad. This technology indexes only true peer-reviewed scholarly papers and filters out irrelevant entries, like student assignments or drafts that easily make it into other aggregators and search engines.

The amount of scholarly literature has grown enormously in the last decades. Successful dissemination became a big issue. New tools are needed to help readers access vast amounts of literature dispersed all over the web and to help authors reach their target audience.

Moreover, research today has become interdisciplinary. The most ground-breaking discoveries tend to happen on the crossroads of different disciplines. Scholars need broad access to literature from many fields, also from outside of their core research area. This is the reason why Paperity covers all subjects, from Sciences, Technology, Medicine, through Social Sciences, to Humanities and Arts.

There are lots of great articles out there which report new significant findings, yet attract no attention, only because they are hard to find. No more than top 10% of research institutions have good access to scholarly communication channels and can share their findings efficiently. The remaining 90%, especially authors from developing countries and early-career researchers, start from a much lower stand and often stay unnoticed despite high quality of their work – says Wojnarski. He adds that it is not by accident that Paperity partners with the EU Contest for Young Scientists, the biggest science fair in Europe. With the help of Paperity, the Contest will improve dissemination of discoveries authored by its participants – top young talents from all over the continent.

Sharing Your Work in Open Access

The scholarly research when read and commented by peers would enable creation of new knowledge. This knowledge when collaboratively sourced, reviewed and applied would develop new technologies for the public good. In this process, the scholars or researchers would get recognition, appreciation and citation by peers and promotions at work place. However, in the life cycle of knowledge creation and development of public good technologies, there is a considerable time lag and has issues about accessibility. Though the scholarly research is available, it is not accessible to everyone. Nevertheless, with the advent of new web 2.0 technologies, and licensing terms, all the researchers can now be able to sharing their scholarly research among peers globally in real-time and pave way for building upon their work for knowledge creation and technology development. Traditionally, the research work is first read at the scholarly conferences and is made available as conference proceedings and then the outcomes are published in the peer-reviewed journals. In this process, the work is evaluated by the peer review process for its credibility and upon publication as an article in a journal; the work gets sanctity and endorsement. This module shall discuss about the ways and means of sharing the scholarly research globally via the World Wide Web and answer a few questions viz., Where to publish? How to choose a suitable journal? What is the journal publication process? In addition, how to share the published work?

Click here to download the resource book.

Apply to Attend OpenCon 2014

OpenConApply to Attend OpenCon 2014

OpenCon 2014 is the student and early career researcher conference on Open Access, Open Education, and Open Data and will be held on November 15-17, 2014 in Washington, DC. It is organized by the Right to Research Coalition, SPARC (The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), and an Organizing Committee of students and early career researchers from around the world.

Submit the form <http://www.opencon2014.org/apply to apply to attend OpenCon 2014. Applications will remain open until August 25th at 23:59 PDT. Acceptance decisions are made by our Organizing Committee of students and early career researchers, and accepted applicants will be notified by September 12th.

Why is there an application process for OpenCon 2014? Who is eligible to apply to attend OpenCon? Have other questions about OpenCon? View participant FAQ <http://www.opencon2014.org/apply/faq>.

Source: http://www.opencon2014.org/

Call for Comments on Proposed OA Policy for DBT and DST, Government of India

open-accessThe Department of Biotechnology and Department of Science & Technology, Government of India had published its proposed Open Access Policy draft on its website and had invited comments and suggestions. See here for the policy draft. You may send your comments/suggestions latest by 25th July, 2014 to madhan@dbt.nic.in

The draft policy mandates the fund grantees to deposit the final manuscripts resulting from the research projects funded by them. It is not clear from the policy draft if the data is also required to be deposited. Though there is a separated policy on ‘Open Data’ by the DST i.e. National Data Sharing and Accessibility Policy (NSDAP), there is no mention of it in the draft policy may be because the ‘Data’ referred to in the NSDAP is not of research data.

The policy draft mandates to deposit the manuscripts within a week of acceptance in their respective Institutional Repositories or with the proposed DBT-DST repository. Currently in India there are about 100 repositories as per ROAR.

The best part of the policy is that it had specified who own the copyright of the research work and the manuscript. It has also added the Copyright Addendum.

We have a similar kind of OA policies from CSIR and ICAR.

We all should congratulate the team who had prepared the policy draft and lets send the suggestions/comments for further improvement of the policy and its implementation.

Building Momentum for National Open Access Policy for India

oaindiaDear All,
Now the time has come to start a campaign  to submit to MHRD and Min. of S&T on National Open Access Policy. For that we need to build a momentum on what is Open Access and how it benefits all of us (science & society).
In this regard, I request you all to please share your thoughts and messages on Open Access with the Ministers responsible.
Please write to Hon’ble PM Mr. Narendra Modi (@narendramodi https://www.facebook.com/narendramodi and Hon’ble Minister HRD Ms. Smriti Z. Irani @smritiirani https://www.facebook.com/Smriti.Irani.Official).
During the Open Access Week (http://www.openaccessweek.org/)  celebrations world-wide (http://www.sparc.arl.org/initiatives/openaccessweek) , we shall submit a draft policy which was already made by our Open Access advocates like Mr. Subbiah Arunachalam and others).
On behalf of Open Access India
Sridhar Gutam

Call for Abstracts – (SciDataCon 2014) International Conference on Data Sharing and Integration for Global Sustainability

SciDataCon 2014: International Conference on Data  Sharing and Integration for Global Sustainability 

*New Delhi, 2-5 November 2014

First Call for Abstracts and Sessions (Deadline: 30 April 2014)

There are many pressing sustainability challenges facing today’s society, from food and water security to poverty alleviation and climate change. Such challenges cannot be solved  without multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary research, as well as the collection, sharing,  integration, use, and stewardship of data across scientific disciplines and domains, and from international sources. The effectiveness and credibility not only of research but also proposed solutions will be highly dependent on the availability of well-documented, quality-assessed, and timely scientific datasets. To facilitate the work of international research undertakings (including the ‘Future Earth’ research programme on global sustainability to be launched by ICSU and its partners in 2014) and to amplify the message of like-minded global data initiatives promoting data sharing and interoperability (including the Group on Earth Observations and the recently established Research Data Alliance), SciDataCon 2014 will highlight the theme of Data Sharing and Integration for Global Sustainability.

*The SciDataCon 2014 Steering Committee* now invites proposals for sessions, and abstracts for oral presentations and posters, addressing the overarching conference theme of ‘Data Sharing and Integration for Global Sustainability’ and related themes such as those indicated below.

1. Data sharing, integration, and interoperability to address research challenges in global sustainability:

2. Big Data science and technology:

3. Development and sustainability of data services:

* Data publication and citation
* Innovative approaches to data integration and interoperability
* Semantic data integration
* Interoperability standards and reference data
* Software architecture and systems
* Disciplinary and interdisciplinary case studies: environment, health, social sciences, humanities, biodiversity, climate change, materials, energy, disasters, etc.
* Data-intensive scientific discovery
* Large-scale computing software and systems
* Presentation, analytics, learning, and knowledge discovery
* Data mining and visualisation
* High-impact applications
* Data systems and infrastructure sustainability
* Data curation and stewardship, and development of trusted repositories
* Solutions and tools for research data management and data security
* Rescue of scientific data at risk
* Capacity building and education in data science
* Private sector roles and public-private partnerships

4. Scientific data for decision making and policy:

5. International collaboration on research data:

* Assessment of the impact and economic and societal value of data
* Data quality, documentation, and credibility
* Data-driven models and data products for decision- and policy-makers
* Citizen science and crowdsourcing
* Sustainability indicators and metrics
* Open government
* Development of new observational and data networks
* Interoperability and integration of existing data networks
* Data policy and access, particularly in developing countries
* Open scientific research data frameworks, including legal issues
* Capacity building and advocacy
* Lessons learned from past or current international research and data programmes
* New opportunities to support Future Earth and other international research initiatives

*Submission Instructions*

Proposals should be submitted before 00:00 UTC on 1 May 2014.

Abstracts for oral presentations and posters

Proposed abstracts must be submitted online, and uploaded files must conform to the format used in the following MS Word template at http://www.scidatacon2014.org/

** Abstract Submission [http://www.scidatacon2014.org/]*

*Proposals for sessions* Proposed sessions must also be submitted online, and envisage a panel discussion, a workshop, or a series of papers on a coherent theme. The proposal should include information about the theme, format, and speakers, in addition to including the status of speaker invitations and their commitment.

* Session Submission [http://www.scidatacon2014.org/]*

*Abstracts publication*

All accepted abstracts will be published in the Conference Proceedings, following the prescribed submission format. Selected authors, who indicated their intention to submit full papers, will be invited to publish a peer-reviewed manuscript in a special issue of the CODATA Data Science Journal.

*About *

SciDataCon 2014 is jointly organized by the Committee on Data for Science and Technology (CODATA) and the World Data System (WDS) interdisciplinary committees of the International Council for Science (ICSU), in collaboration with the Indian National Science Academy (INSA).

*For enquiries: secretariat@scidatacon2014.org  Conference Website: www.SciDataCon2014.org 

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