Saturday 27 August 2022

White House OSTP Memo and Report on Open Access Direction for Federal Funded Research

On August 25, 2022, the U.S. White House Office of Science and Technology Policy issued a memorandum and a report concerning open access publishing and the results and data of federally funded research.  The memorandum, in part, states:

Building on these important advances, the policy guidance laid out in the 2013 Memorandum can be improved to achieve delivery of federally funded research results and data to all of America. Years of public feedback have indicated that the primary limitation of the 2013 Memorandum is the optional 12-month embargo from public access of any publication resulting from federally funded research. This provision has limited immediate access of federally funded research results to only those able to pay for it or who have privileged access through libraries or other institutions. Financial means and privileged access must never be the pre-requisites to realizing the benefits of federally funded research that the American public deserves.

A federal public access policy consistent with our values of equal opportunity must allow for broad and expeditious sharing of federally funded research—and must allow all Americans to benefit from the returns on our research and development investments without delay. Upholding these core U.S. principles in our public access policy also strengthens our ability to be a critical leader and partner on issues of open science around the world. The U.S. is committed to the ideas that openness in science is fundamental, security is essential, and freedom and integrity are crucial. Improving public access policies across the U.S. government to promote the rapid sharing of federally funded research data with appropriate protections and accountability measures will allow for greater validity of research results and more equitable access to data resources aligned with these ideals. To promote equity and advance the work of restoring the public’s trust in Government science, and to advance American scientific leadership, now is the time to amend federal policy to deliver immediate public access to federally funded research.

The memorandum directs that:

In accordance with the provisions listed in Section 3, Federal agencies should develop new, or update existing, public access plans as soon as possible, and submit them to OSTP and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) no later than: (1) 180 days after the date of this memorandum for federal agencies with more than $100 million in annual research and development (R&D) expenditures; and (2) 360 days after the date of this memorandum for federal agencies with $100 million or less in annual R&D expenditures. This extended deadline is designed to accommodate a longer lead time for federal agencies who were not subject to the 2013 Memorandum.

There's more in the memo and report -- the memo and report are available, here.  Hat tip to Swaraj Barooah of the Spicy IP Blog. 

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