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UK Open Science essential for new Horizon Europe funding programme - 10 May 2019

SPARC Europe is satisfied with the endorsement, on April 17, by the European Parliament (EP) of the Political Partial Agreement on Horizon Europe, the next research and innovation framework programme. Back in March 2019, the EP and Council of the European Union had reached a provisional agreement as part of the trilogue process. That agreement was approved by the Council on April 15. With that vote, European legislators demonstrated that they stand "behind the idea to keep the EU at the forefront of global research and innovation," said Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, in an online statement. This agreement sends a strong signal about the importance of science and innovation for the future of Europe and shows Europe’s potential to lead in the promotion of Open Science and Open Access policies.

The Framework Programme on Horizon Europe (FP9) is a €100 billion funding programme initially presented in June 2018 by the European Commission to support research and innovation, replacing Horizon 2020. Planned to run from 2021 to 2027, it aims to reinforce Europe’s competitive position in the global landscape of research and innovation in areas including climate research, security, healthcare and other sectors. It is to play a key complementary role to national research funding and demonstrate the value that European cooperation can create.

As the result of the unremitting efforts of SPARC Europe —together with EUA, LIBER, and IFLA and representing university, library, research and cultural heritage communities— the EP agreed to adopt the principle of “fostering open science and ensuring visibility to the public and open access to scientific publications and research data, including appropriate exceptions,” as stated in Article 2(h). Likewise, Annex I of the Programme states that: “Horizon Europe will provide dedicated support for open access to scientific publications, to knowledge repositories and other data sources.”

This agreement is good news for researchers, practitioners, SMEs, industry and wider society, and paves the way to making Open Science the modus operandi of Horizon Europe. SPARC Europe is convinced that Open Science principles can increase the impact of European research, promote collaboration and innovation, and lead to higher returns on investments for Horizon Europe.

SPARC Europe welcomes the European Commission, European Parliament and European Council’s commitment to Open Science in the final text of the Programme and Regulation of Horizon Europe. In the first instance, the HE Programme’s overall objective states “fostering open science and ensuring visibility to the public and open access to scientific publications and research data, including appropriate exceptions.”

SPARC Europe applaud the Regulation’s general requirement to make Horizon Europe’s research results (both articles and data) Open Access, and that it promotes and encourages other open science practices to ensure increased access to publicly funded work. The regulation goes further to state “The work programme may provide for additional incentives or obligations to adhere to open science practices” which clearly underlines the importance of Open Science to Horizon Europe. The Programme also lists a range of reward and recognition mechanisms for researchers to spur actions for “promoting the adoption of open science practices, responsible R&I”. This will help change the current cultural practice of communicating research and adopting open science practices.

The Regulation also calls on other third countries or funders related to the programme to promote and encourage open science.

In summary, Horizon Europe’s commitment to Open Science and Open Access consistently and throughout its Programme and Regulation, demonstrates Europe’s leadership in Open Science by Europe’s largest public funder and thereby makes a vital contribution towards changing European practice in scholarly communication.

Although the agreement is a positive achievement, the budgetary aspects and some related horizontal provisions such as the international association of the Horizon Europe programme (including participation of non-EU countries, e.g. possibly post-Brexit UK) are outstanding. Funding for Horizon Europe is thus subject to the overall agreement on the EU’s next long-term budget (2021-2027), proposed by the Commission in May 2018. While the agreement allows the Commission to start preparing for the programme’s launch, the final legislation will only be adopted once the EU 2021-2027 budget is agreed by the EP, after the elections in May 2019. The EP’s Legal Affairs Committee (JURI) will also have to vote on the relationship of Horizon Europe with EU treaties.

SPARC Europe looks forward to continuing to promote the principles of Open Access and Open Science in the lead-up to Horizon Europe’s official start in 2021. SPARC Europe will make use of opportunities to ensure that these principles become standard practice in Europe’s research and innovation sector.

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UK IOP Publishing’s Materials Research Express to become fully gold OA journal from 2020 - 10 May 2019

IOP Publishing has announced that Materials Research Express (MRX) will become a fully gold open access journal from 2020 to reflect increasing demand for more accessible and open science.

All articles published in MRX from volume 7 (2020) onwards will be immediately free to read under a Creative Commons licence, providing maximum visibility and allowing authors to comply with any requirements for open access publication from institutions and funders.

Since its launch in 2013, MRX has published more than 6,200 articles, received submissions from over 90 countries, and has been cited nearly 10,000 times, becoming a central platform for the dissemination of high-quality, peer-reviewed research in all areas of materials science.

Under a fully gold open access model, MRX will provide authors with the widest possible global audience. The journal will also continue to prioritise excellence and rigour in the publishing service that it provides to the whole materials science community, including authors, reviewers and readers.

The change in publishing model will come into effect for all articles submitted to MRX from October 1, 2019, with no charge for any articles submitted during October 2019. Thereafter, the article publication charge (APC) will be GBP1,100, discounted to GBP825 until the end of 2020.

In line with the Research4Life programme, corresponding authors based in many lower income countries will receive a full fee waiver or discount.

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UK Taylor & Francis Group partners with KNOLSKAPE to create digital awareness among its global workforce - 10 May 2019

Academic publisher Taylor & Francis Group has partnered with KNOLSKAPE to create digital awareness among its 2000-strong global workforce.

With digital technologies changing the way their audiences are consuming content, the publishing industry is undergoing a shift in the way they operate and support customer expectations. This requires publishing companies to create awareness about digital and make it relevant to the world of publishing and their business.

To support this shift, Taylor & Francis partnered with KNOLSKAPE to create awareness about digital, its trends, disruptions, and impacts on the publishing industry. The initiative, named “Destination Digital” aimed to develop a digital mindset at scale and help their employees understand digital and how it applies to their business and role.

The solution delivered to Taylor & Francis comprised a series of gamified quizzes focused on the digital themes of Boundaryless Organizations, Limitless Digitization, Unbounded Innovation, and Relentless Iteration.

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Canada Applications for CARL Research in Librarianship Grant called for - 10 May 2019

The Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) is now accepting applications from established and newly appointed librarians working in a CARL member library.

When merited, up to $4,000 is awarded annually to one or more of the applicants, to help achieve the following objectives: to support librarians conducting research in academic librarianship with the intent to publish the results; and to promote research in the field of academic librarianship by and/or about Canadians.

The CARL Research in Librarianship Grant is intended to support projects involving structured, evidence-based research, which propose answers to real-world issues.

The submission deadline for proposals is due by August 15, 2019.

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UK The Charlesworth Group appoints Mark Allin as its non-executive Director - 10 May 2019

The Charlesworth Group has appointed Mark Allin as its non-executive Director. Mark is an industry-leading figure, working within senior management positions in publishing for over 30 years across academic, trade and educational sectors in Asia, USA and Europe. Formerly COO and then CEO of Wiley, Mark is currently Chair at William Reed Business Media and a non-executive director at Edinburgh University Press. Mark is also an entrepreneur with hands-on experience in start-ups; he co-founded Capstone Publishing, is current Principle of ContentAll and is also a strategic advisor for Zapnito, a technology start-up which develops community software platforms for publishers.

Mark will be supporting the Charlesworth Group with their overall strategic direction as they continue a period of rapid growth. Mark’s experience in both start-up and established businesses, together with a track record of evolving new digital businesses, will be particularly valuable in the next phase of Charlesworth’s evolution. He brings a wealth of experience of growing digital B2B and B2C businesses and in developing new revenue streams for academic and professional publishers.

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