Open Access: Plan S implementation guidance open for public feedback

Following the announcement of Plan S in September 2018, cOAlition S has approved the implementation guidance on making full and immediate Open Access a reality by 2020. The guidance is open for public feedback until 1 February 2019.

The seven-page implementation guidance outlines three ways researchers can comply with Plan S, which is backed by the FNR along with national funding agencies of countries including the United Kingdom, France, and Austria, as well as charity funders including the Wellcome Trust and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The implementation guidance outlines that researchers can publish in an open-access (OA) journal or platform, as well as in a subscription journal, as long as a final, peer-reviewed version or accepted manuscript is immediately made available in an OA repository.

Finally, grantees will be permitted to publish in hybrid journals, which charge subscriptions but also offer an OA option, providing the journal has committed to switch to a fully OA model.

Implementation of Plan S is set to take place from 1 January 2020, having impact on either

1) existing grants;

2) new projects/grants or, at the latest;

3) new Calls.

The guidance outlines that cOAlition S members should, at the very least, implement the new requirements in all Calls launched after 1 January 2020.

„No science should be locked behind paywalls”

Coordinated by Science Europe, and supported by the European Commission and the European Research Council, Plan S was announced in September 2018. In a preamble to the Plan S document, Marc Schiltz, President of Science Europe and Secretary General of the FNR said:

„No science should be locked behind paywalls. Open Access to research results is foundational to the scientific enterprise. I am glad that a core group of research funders, driven by their collective duty of care for the good functioning of the science system, have committed to take a decisive step to make Open Access a reality.”

The FNR – a convinced advocate of Open Access – joined cOAlition S, the group of funders who have committed to implementing Plan S, as soon as the plan was announced. The FNR previously led the adoption of the first National Policy on Open Access in 2015. Back in December 2016, it introduced its Open Access policy for publications from FNR co-funded research as well as a new instrument to help cover the article processing fees, the FNR Open Access Fund. Together with stakeholders and CEOs from Luxembourg research institutions, the FNR is currently working toward defining a national plan for Open Science.

As of late November 2018, cOAlition S consists of 13 national funders, as well as three charitable foundations.

Open Science Cloud unveiled

The European Open Science Cloud (EOSC), a virtual one-stop shop for researchers to share, access and reuse data, was officially unveiled by the European Commission on 23 November 2018, giving scientists, open data advocates, research institutions and policymakers a first glimpse of the portal. The European Commission also announced a team of 11 to run the ambitious European Open Science Cloud project, including Stephan Kuster, Secretary General of Science Europe, as well as Natalia Manola, Director of OpenAIRE.

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