New plans for a ‘green’ open access China
A huge drive towards open access publishing in China will mean that most of the country’s top research papers will have to be freely accessible within a year of publication. The policy also sees China backing ‘green’ open access, where papers are archived in publicly accessible databases or repositories after a set period of time, rather than paying the journal to make the article available immediately, known as ‘gold’ open access.
In 2012, Chinese scientists published 186,577 papers in journals indexed by Thomson Reuters Science Citation Index (SCI) database, accounting for 13.9% of the world’s scientific output. More than 100,000 of these were funded by the Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). Chinese Academy of Science (CAS) scientists published 18,000 SCI papers in 2012. In the same year, another 500,000 papers were published in domestic science and technology journals, mostly in Chinese.
Currently, most top research conducted by Chinese scientists is published in international journals, making it inaccessible to many domestic researchers. This move sends to Chinese researchers a message in line with funders in other countries. The new policy is not expected to affect China’s own publishing industry however as most journals are subsidised by the government or research institutions.
The policy’s launch conference was told that open access is an obligation and responsibility of scientists that will promote innovation around the world.
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