Open access and the developing world – read the latest

WHO published a feature entitled Open access: a giant leap towards bridging health inequities, in their August 2009 edition of the Bulletin of the World Health Organisation. In this article the authors urge the United Nations and other international organizations to give strong support to the open access movement as a means of advancing health and development in emerging nations.

Meanwhile, several partners are running a survey of OA repositories in developing countries.  This study is part of a cooperative program between eIFL.net, the University of Kansas Libraries, the DRIVER project and Key Perspectives Ltd., and aims at creating an inventory of current digital repository activities in developing and transition countries, at both the infrastructure and services level.

In a recent International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications online discussion, participants were asked, Why are publishers participating in developing country access initiatives? Participants in the discussion included learned society and commercial scholarly publishers. It was found that the key motivations for publishers’ participation include moral duty and a desire to serve their authors as best they can.

As part of the World Library and Information Congress 75th Annual General Conference and Assembly in Italy this year, Paraj Shukla and Anand P Singh presented a paper on open access initiatives for agriculture in India. In this article the authors conclude that formulation and implementation of an open access mandate within Indian NARS is fast becoming a reality.

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