5th Frankfurt Scientific Symposium
22.10.2005 - 23.10.2005
Is there any progress in alternative publishing? Problems of scholarly information economy
Open access - neither green road nor golden road. Is this the road to hell?
Dr. Rafael Ball, Leiter der Zentralbibliothek Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, Jülich, Germany
In keeping with the views of its guru, Stephen Harnard, the open access movement is only prepared to discuss the two models of the "green road" and the "golden road" as sole alternatives for the future of scientific publishing. The "golden road" is put forward as the royal road for solving the journals crisis. However, no one has drawn attention to the fact that the golden road represents a purely socialist solution to a free-market problem and thus continues the "samizdat" tradition of underground literature in the former Eastern bloc.
The present paper reveals the alarmingly low level at which the open access movement intends to publish top-class results from science and research, and the low degree of professionalism with which they are satisfied.
What's on the menu at the soup kitchen?
Simon Beale, Vice President International Sales, Marketing and Business Development, ProQuest Information and Learning, International Division
In this increasingly complex world of learned information delivery and discovery - is it possible that the "free lunch" the Publishing world worries about could come true? Although Open Access and Institutional Repositories have not (yet) created the "scorched earth" effect many were predicting, they are slowly and inevitably gaining momentum. Broader access to top-level information via Google (and others) does indeed appear to be "good enough" for many in their search for content. But you rarely get food for free in a good quality restaurant. You pay for the selection, preparation, speed and expertise of the delivery. At the soup kitchen the food can often be filling - but the queue will be long, the wait even longer and there is no chance of silver service or à la carte. If you are unfortunate enough to have little choice then this may be a great solution. Others will be willing to pay for a more satisfactory meal. As in all aspects of life, diversification and specialisation are fundamental forces. The publishing community in the years to come will continue to develop its offerings for a variety of needs that require more than just broth. To stretch the analogy, the ongoing presence of tap water in our lives has done little to halt the extraordinary rise of bottled water as part of our staple diet. Business reality will continue to settle these types of debate; my bet is that the commercial publishers see a role as providing information that commands an intrinsic value proposition to enough customers to remain economically viable for some time to come. Inspired by the comments and ideas expounded by Dr. James O'Donnell of Georgetown University on the liblicense listserv on 20th July this year, this paper will look to expand on the analogy and identify the good, the bad - but importantly the difference in information quality and access that will result in the radically changed (but still co-existent) information landscape of tomorrow.
Inciting and mandating: how to accelerate the Open Access movement toward its objective
Jean-Claude Guédon , Department of Comperative Literature, University of Montreal, Montreal, Canada
While science claims to be universal, the notion of universality actually covers two very different facets: on the one hand, it refers to the universal value of the epistemological claims of science while, on the other hand, it addresses the issue of how fully the process of scientific communication is presently globalized. How the issue of open access crosses that of the globalization of scientific communication will be the theme of this presentation. The conclusion will be that, without open access, the globalization of scientific communication will lead to increased knowledge and digital divisions.
Open access bibliographical databases - are they a threat, opportunity or even for real?
Jonas Holmström, Research Assistant, Department of Management and Organisation, Swedish School of Economics and Business Adminstration, Helsinki, Finland
The economical and organizational debates about open access have mostly been concerned with journals. This is not surprising since the open access movement can be seen largely as a response to the serials crisis. Recently the open access debate has been extended to include access to government produced data in different forms. In this presentation I'll critically look at some economic and organizational issues pertaining to the open access provision of bibliographical data.
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