Last week, the University of California, whose ten campuses comprise one of the largest research institutions in the world, decided not to renew its subscription with Elsevier. This monumental decision follows other initiatives in Europe, Asia and elsewhere that likewise aim to expand open access options and prevent unsustainable cost increases to journal subscription packages.
We support the University of California in their stand. Principle-based negotiations and decisions reflect the growing importance of open research to advance global knowledge and transform scholarly communications, as well as respond to the untenable licensing costs that university libraries pay with their limited public funds.
Bold moves such as last week’s University of California decision happen when there is campus-wide support. In the case of the University of California, this decision was supported by the libraries and by its Academic Senate, and followed the publication of faculty-driven principles on scholarly communication. This commitment is a result of a system-wide initiative that has been developing over years between University of California faculty and librarians to build awareness and support for open access.
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