This week is International Open Access Week

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On 8th September 2016 the BBC reported that a British student, Will Broadway, has invented a mobile fridge designed to transport vaccines that will affect the lives of millions of people around the world. Another noteworthy aspect to this story is that the student will not be seeking to patent the invention:

“I wanted to make something for people who have next to nothing. It should be a basic human right, in my opinion, to have a vaccination. “I don’t think that it should be patented to restrict use.”

With this week being International Open Access week, this story is a great demonstration of how choosing to put ‘open’ into action can bring benefits to the medical and healthcare world.

Open Access week is an international event that seeks to highlight the benefits of Open Access, as well as celebrating the achievements in making research openly available. The Open Access movement has been around for some time, and building upon the Budapest Open Access Initiative in 2002, funders like the Wellcome Trust & Medical Research Council introduced Open Access policies in 2006. Over the course of the past 10 years the move to making research freely and openly available has gathered momentum. Many research funders now require any research that they support to be made available as Open Access and actively support the dissemination of research findings to encourage further discoveries. The Wellcome Trust is even going so far as to launch its own platform to allow researchers to easily and quickly publish their findings – on the Wellcome Open Research site.

Here at St George’s we too are playing our part, the Institutional Repository, SORA, has been steadily growing and currently has over 1500 research papers deposited within it that are either immediately open access, or will be openly available after a short embargo period. This includes important papers such as the recent paper by Professor Dalgleish et al, which was highlighted by St George’s recently, which has highlighted significant advances in the treatment of pancreatic cancer, and is an article that is fully open access.

More about SGUL research in SORA:

  • 1,500 full text & rising (immediately open or open after short embargo)
  • All work is peer reviewed
  • Full text in indexed in Google & Hunter
  • Average downloads per month so far in 2016: 1370

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What you can do

  • So, for Open Access week, why not have a look at SORA and discover the benefits of Open Research?
  • Look out for Open Access Week tweets from @sgullibrary
  • Join the movement to put open into action

For more information on open access please visit the Library open access webpages, or contact openaccess@sgul.ac.uk

Chrissie Phillips
Jennifer Smith
Research Publications and Open Access

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