Academy responds to Independent Review of RCUK OA Policy

12 September 2014

The Academy has published its submission to the Independent Review of the implementation of RCUK policy on open access publishing, chaired by Professor Sir Bob Burgess FAcSS.

The Academy’s Learned Societies were consulted to uncover evidence of what is happening in their field. Sadly the timing of the consultation over the holiday period made it difficult for people to respond, but we are very grateful for the ten societies that did manage to complete our survey questionnaire and so help provide the Review Panel with evidence of what is happening, early days though it is.

The Academy’s Policy Working Group, chaired by Professor Tony Crook CBE FAcSS, oversaw the response, which was written by the Academy and Campaign’s Research and Policy Officer, Roses Leech-Wilkinson. The Academy has made the following recommendations to the Review Panel:

  • Between now and the next stage of the policy assessment, RCUK should fund independent and comprehensive evidence-gathering – including in respect to the points listed in paragraphs 10 and 11 above – to judge the policy’s impacts adequately and inform future directions. Other major commissioners and funders, such as the Nuffield Foundation and the Leverhulme Trust, should be among those consulted.
  • Given that the most serious effects will only be knowable after the policy has been in effect for a number of years, RCUK should complete – and if necessary, extend – the full five-year ‘transition period’ without adjusting the existing transition policies, in order to assess the impact properly before agreeing on a longer-term policy.