Advancing the Impact of UC Berkeley Research
The Berkeley Research Impact Initiative (BRII) supports faculty members, post-docs, and graduate students who want to make their journal articles free to all readers immediately upon publication.
An 18-month pilot program, BRII will subsidize, in various degrees, fees charged to authors who select open access or paid access publication. The pilot will also yield data that can be used to gauge faculty interest in — as well as the budgetary impacts of — these new modes of scholarly communication on the Berkeley campus.
Read about the Berkeley Research Impact Initiative (BRII) in the May 2010 issue of PLoS Biology. In Institutional Open Access Funds: Now Is The Time, authors Eckman and Weil describe how this innovative program has helped to increase the amount of Berkeley research universally accessible to readers by proving funding to pay open access fees. The project has also promoted faculty retention of publishing rights, fostered dialogue between libraries, researchers and journal publishers, and, ultimately encouraged a more sustainable scholarly communication environment.
The California Digital Library (CDL) and Springer have signed a ground-breaking agreement in which UC-authored articles accepted in most of the 1700 Springer journals will be published using Springer Open Choice which brings with it full and immediate access to all readers. This means that UC authors will pay no additional publication fees in order for their articles to be immediately and fully open to all. Under this agreement, articles will be published under a license in which authors retain the right to distribute and re-use their articles freely.
The UC-Springer agreement is the first large-scale open access experiment of its type undertaken with a major commercial publisher in North America. In 2008, some 1500 journal articles by UC-affiliated authors were published in Springer journals. Please note that there are several Springer titles ineligible for this program. See the complete list of ineligible titles (PDF)
Read more about the pilot in The Daily Californian (1/28/09).
October 2: The Berkeleyan, the campus faculty and staff newspaper, profiles the Berkeley Research Impact Initiative (BRII) and the open access compact in which five universities (Berkeley, Harvard, MIT, Dartmouth and Cornell) have have pledged to underwrite "reasonable publication charges" for articles authored by their faculty in open-access journals.
Open access literature provides barrier-free access to information.
Researchers from anywhere in the world can read scholarly output that
has been made available in an open-access journal. A wider audience, in
turn, has the potential to increase the impact of the research
presented in an open-access article.
Traditional, for-profit journals owned by large multinational corporations like Elsevier and Springer, charge skyrocketing subscription rates which University Librarian Tom Leonard cites as "creating new walls around discoveries." The BRII open access fund, he adds, "can really
help take down these walls…"
Read more: A ‘public option’ for scholarship.
September 24, 2009: SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) profiles UC Berkeley and the Berkeley Research Impact Initiative (BRII). The libraries at UC Berkeley and the University of Calgary are among pioneer institutions to have established pools of money to cover the cost of open-access journal fees. As one Berkeley author and recipient of BRII funds stated in the profile, "I absolutely wanted the results to be freely available to the press, state agencies and others who don’t necessarily have access to the libraries and journals."
September 15, 2009: Five universities including UC Berkeley have announced the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity. Open access literature provides barrier-free access to information. Researchers from anywhere in the world can read scholarly output that has been made available in an open-access journal. A wider audience, in turn, has the potential to increase the impact of the research presented in an open-access article. Signatories of the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity commit to the establishment of funds or other mechanisms for underwriting publication charges. When authors submit their articles to fee-based open-access journals, theses funds can be used to underwrite the publication charge.
UC Berkeley was an early adopter of the funding equity approach, having established an OA fund in January 2008. The Berkeley Research Impact Initiative (BRII) is available to any Berkeley professor, post doc or graduate student who wants to make their journal articles free to all readers immediately upon publication. According to Berkeley’s University Librarian Tom Leonard, "Publishers and researchers know that it has never been easier to share the best work they produce with the world. But they also know their traditional business model is creating new walls around discoveries. Universities can really help take down these walls and the open-access compact is a highly significant tool for the job."
For more information:
January 21, 2009: The Berkeley Research Impact Initiative (BRII) turns one year old today. BRII supports faculty members, post-docs, and graduate students who want to make their journal articles free to all readers immediately upon publication. So far we are very pleased with the results. We have received 40 requests for funding, indicating that there is interest and a need for funding of open access journal articles. The requests span life and physical and the social sciences. This is an 18 month pilot project. For more information on the pilot along with instructions on how to apply for funding for your open access journal article go to the BRII website.
Read more about the Berkeley Research Impact Initiative (BRII) in the February 29 edition of the Berkeleyan:
- Keeping the fruits of knowledge within reach: the Berkeley Research Impact Initiative explores alternatives to traditional publishing models
"At a time when budget-strapped university libraries nationwide are struggling to keep pace with rising subscription costs for scholarly publications, Berkeley is exploring alternative routes to the unfettered pursuit of knowledge."