The outgoing boss of the Australian Research Council, who is heading
to Uni of Melb, is (basically) anti open access

And she gets a direct, hard hitting, reply from Peter Suber

Why ARC hasn't adopted an OA mandate for publicly-funded research

Margaret Sheil explains why she opposed an OA mandate at the
Australian Research Council, and still opposes one. In doing so, she
reveals two deep misunderstandings.

(1) She thinks OA mandates require grantees to publish in OA journals.
They don't. They require grantees to deposit their peer-reviewed
manuscripts in OA repositories. There are good reasons not to mandate
gold OA (through journals), and she lists some. But that's why there
are no gold OA mandates anywhere in the world. All OA mandates require
green OA (through repositories), and she gives no reasons to oppose

(2) She thinks OA mandates interfere with the commercialization of
patentable discoveries. But this problem has long been solved and the
solution is easy. Write the policy so that it only applies to
published articles. Grantees who have reasons to wait before
publishing (e.g. so they can apply for a patent) can wait. When they
voluntarily choose to publish, the policy kicks in. (Yes, OA is not as
simple as it sounds; but neither is it as simplistic as Sheil makes it

The good news: Sheil's successor is likely to be better informed. The
bad news: The publishing lobby will pick up on her misunderstandings
and repeat them. More bad news: the U of Melbourne, where Sheil is
becoming the new Provost, won't have an OA mandate any time soon.

John Vandenberg

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