May 18, 2022

Search is on for New Steward to Deliver Plan S Open Access, as Robert-Jan Smits Smits Bows Out

From Science Business:

Robert-Jan Smits finished his one year mandate as the European Commission’s open access envoy last week and will be replaced for now by Robert Kiely, head of open research at the Wellcome Trust, until a long-term coordinator for the Plan S open access initiative is appointed.


Smits didn’t reveal the names of those under consideration to replace him, but ruled out Marc Schiltz, Science Europe’s president, and David Sweeney, executive chair of Research England and co-chair of the implementation task force for Plan S. “They both have shops to run,” he said.


In May, there is a meeting of the Global Research Council in Brazil, with representatives from all the main funders in the world expected to attend. There, Plan S organisers will try to get more agencies to sign up, and discuss terms with a similar open access initiative, Open Knowledge for Latin America and the Global South, known as Amelica.


Smits never expected the plan “would get so much traction, so much visibility and discussion. This was the icebreaker that science needed,” he said.

Direct to Full Text Article (approx. 1380 words)

See Also: Departure of Special Envoy for Open Access and Plan S Architect, Robert-Jan Smits (via Coalition S)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.