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Commission study on Europe’s scientific publication system

Following ongoing public debate on difficult access to and dissemination of scientific publications, the Directorate General for research of the European Commission commissioned a study seeking to assess the evolution of the market for scientific publishing and to discuss potential European level measures to help improve access to and exchange and dissemination of scientific publications.

The study, carried out by a consortium led by Professor Mathias Dewatripont of the Université Libre de Bruxelles, confirms the importance of accessibility to and dissemination of scientific knowledge, given science’s key role in economic growth, and makes a number of recommendations for future action:

  • Guarantee public access to publicly-funded research shortly after publication;
  • aim at a level-playing field in terms of business models in publishing;
  • raise researcher awareness of journal quality beyond scientific quality;
  • guarantee perennial access to scholarly journal digital archives;
  • promote pro-competitive pricing strategies;
  • promote the development of electronic publications;

The European Commission is calling for reactions to the study. The study and its feedback will be presented at a conference on scientific publication to be held in autumn 2006.

Study on scientific publication market in Europe