1.5 Importance of Open Access Mandates
n generic sense, open access policy is required to ensure wide, sustainable access of scholarly outputs/contributions. Universities and other funding agencies like Government, corporate houses, international agencies etc. are the main sources as funders of research works. They are starting to make it part of their mandates to ensure scholars to make their published peer-reviewed research output (“publish or perish”) available as Open Access (OA), and increase its visibility, accessibility, accountability and impact of scholarly outputs for any one, from anywhere. When we are talking about OA mandates, we are trying to indicate about green open access. OA mandates are mainly applicable to Green OA. Because of obvious reasons, Gold OA requires no such mandate. Authors are intended to publish their scholarly output in open manner. But, one point is to be noted about “Gold” open access mandate-- if an author is willing to publish his/her research work in gold way, then funder organization or institution needs to provide APC (Article Processing Charge(s)) to authors. In introduction to this unit, it is stated through a graphical representation that open access mandates increase deposition of items in the forms of article, books and data. The reasons to promote open access mandates (in specific) are of importance to different stake holders which are:
- Researchers: At the time of pursuing research work, scholars may consult with most of the articles (metadata and full-text) free of cost to use, re-use, and remix subject with the condition of giving proper credits to content creators. In this case, they can also enjoy data which are not even subscribed by their respected institutions or organizations. After accomplishing research work, researchers may publish their thesis in open manner for wide accessibility and greater visibility with the help of OA services to increase the social and academic impact of their research work. Indeed citations are also increasing due to its easy accessibility.
- Funders: Research works are funded by institutions, organizations or government initiations. OA is a win-win situation for all the stakeholders. Increasing citations will give funders and publisher’s greater visibility and rich profile. It will improve scholars' social and academic impact. And it will also help to build a strong culture of sharing of scholarly resources and as a whole leading to the betterment of the society.