US government seeks input on Open Access policies

Quick one here. For all interested in Open Access.  Below are some excerpts from an email I received from the folks at PLoS Computational Biology.  The main point: the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy is seeking input on broadening public access to publically funded research …

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy has recently invited comment on broadening public access to publicly funded research and they want to hear from you. Contributions may be posted to their blog at:

Their Request for Information (RFI) lasts for just 30 days and expires on 7 January 2010, so we’d like to inform you about this important effort and encourage you to get involved in the discussion. This is an opportunity for us to shape a broader public access policy – how it should be implemented, what type of technology and features are needed, and how to manage it.

There are 3 main topics where the administration would appreciate your input (they also welcome general comments) and each one is open for a set period of time:

1. Implementation – expires 20 December 2009 (i.e. on Sunday). Which Federal agencies are good candidates to adopt Public Access policies? What variables (field of science, proportion of research funded by public or private entities, etc.) should affect how public access is implemented at various agencies, including the maximum length of time between publication and public release?

2. Features and Technology – 21-31 December 2009. In what format should the data be submitted in order to make it easy to search and retrieve information, and to make it easy for others to link to it? Are there existing digital standards for archiving and interoperability to maximize public benefit? How are these anticipated to change?

3. Management – 1-7 January 2010. What are the best mechanisms to ensure compliance? What would be the best metrics of success? What are the best examples of usability in the private sector (both domestic and international)? Should those who access papers be given the opportunity to comment or provide feedback?

 Hat tip to Karla Heidelberg, Carl Beottiger, and many others who emailed me about this to suggest I post something …

Related things worth looking at:

Author: Jonathan Eisen

I am an evolutionary biologist and a Professor at U. C. Davis. (see my lab site here). My research focuses on the origin of novelty (how new processes and functions originate). To study this I focus on sequencing and analyzing genomes of organisms, especially microbes and using phylogenomic analysis

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