Today scholars, publishers, and librarians, are developing a number of alternatives to the traditional subscriber-restricted journal system. Most of these alternatives focus around the open distribution of scholarly information via the Web, and fall under the general term of "open access." Open access is important because for the past two decades the cost of journals has risen much faster than either the consumer price index, or library funding. As a result, journal cancellations and reduced book purchases are an annual phenomenon in libraries throughout the world. As a consequence, every year traditional subscriber-restricted journals are available to fewer and fewer scholars.
Open access may take the form of posting traditionally published articles (in the author's final draft version) in an online location where they would be available to anyone, publishing in one of the thousands of open access journals, or making scholarly material openly available in a variety of other ways.
The University of Texas at Austin created the UT Digital Repository (UTDR) to provide open, online access to the products of the University’s research and scholarship and to preserve those works for future generations. The UTDR is open to any faculty, researcher, student or staff member to use. Contact information is listed below.
In addition to universities, funding agencies around the world are very interested in having the research they fund made easily accessible to all scholars, and no longer locked up in relatively inaccessible, limited-distribution, expensive traditional journals. The NIH already requires that all funded investigators submit to PubMed Central an electronic version of the author’s final manuscript.
The Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) recently issued a memo calling on all federal agencies receiving more than $100 million in research & development funds to come up with a plan for sharing the results of that funded research. Plans from each of the agencies should be released late summer 2013. UT is closely monitoring these developments and will be responding with resources to help researchers.
Data is increasingly being included in open access plans. The NSF, NEH, NIH, IMLS, and NOAA all require grant proposals to include a data management plan. This plan must outline how data will be handled both during the project and after, including if and how that data will be shared. UT has created a website outlining university resources related to data management.More information about open access, the UTDR, data management, and funding agencies policies is available in the links below.
Funding Agency Policies:
Scholarly Communications Advisor
Digital Repository Librarian
Collection Development Officer
Collection Administration Librarian