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New York/San Francisco, 22 March 2004: The Open
Society Institute (OSI) and the Public Library of Science (PLoS),a
San Francisco-based non-profit group of scientists and physicians campaigning
for freely-available scientific and medical literature world-wide,
have announced a new grants program to support open-access publishing
in developing and transition countries. The grants will make it much easier
for scientists based in developing and transition countries to submit
articles to the premiere peer-reviewed research journals published by
OSI's Information Program has been a strong supporter of the open access movement. Its Budapest Open Access Initiative, launched in 2002, advocates the support of two parallel strategies for the adoption of open access: self-archiving and open-access journals.
The OSI/PLoS Institutional Membership grants will target developing and transition countries. Authors from the least-developed countries will receive a waiver of publication charge upon request, a policy PLoS has had in place since the launch of its first journal, PLoS Biology, in October 2003. To ensure that ability to pay publication charges does not influence the review process, PLoS has a firewall in place to shield requests from all editors and reviewers.
The debate about open access has shifted recently. Doubts about its value have been replaced with doubts about its viability. "This commitment from OSI answers the question of how scientists in developing countries will be able to publish in our journals on a large scale," says Dr Helen Doyle, PLoS director of development and strategic alliances.
The complete list of countries and regions where institutions are eligible for the new memberships can be found on the right-hand side of this page.
More information about the grants is available at http://www.soros.org/openaccess/grants.shtml
. The joint OSI-PLoS announcement follows the January 2004 launch of the
PLoS Institutional Membership program. More information about the PLoS
Membership Program is available at http://www.plos.org/support.
Eligible countries and regions:
PLoS to launch open-access medical journal
San Francisco, 5 May 2004: New discoveries about human health and disease will be made freely and immediately available to anyone in the world with an Internet connection - from physicians and researchers to patients and policy makers - in a new open-access medical journal, PLoS Medicine, to be launched in Autumn, 2004.
"Thanks to the Internet and new strategies for financing publication costs, it is now possible to share the results of medical research with anyone, anywhere, who could benefit from it. How could we not do it?" argued Dr Harold E. Varmus, Nobel laureate, former National Institutes of Health Director, and one of the co-founders of the Public Library of Science (PLoS).
Publishing opportunities PLoS, a non-profit organization
whose mission is to make reliable scientific and medical literature a
public resource, formally announced today that it will publish PLoS
Medicine, an open-access, international, general medical journal,
beginning this fall. A call for papers has been issued and the journal
is now accepting submissions.
Worldwide recruiting The prospect of an open-access alternative to the existing subscription-based prestigious medical journals has been welcomed by many in the health research and advocacy worlds. Already more than 75 physicians and researchers have been recruited to the editorial board of PLoS Medicine, ranging from an AIDS physician in Rwanda to the leader of a gene therapy unit in Paris to a cardiologist in Salt Lake City.
PLoS was founded in 2000 by Dr Varmus and colleagues Patrick O. Brown of Stanford University and Michael B. Eisen of Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and the University of California, Berkeley, USA. Last October, the organization launched its first open-access journal of peer-reviewed scientific research, PLoS Biology, whose content has been favorably reviewed by the New York Times, Le Monde, and countless other media outlets around the world.
'Strong case' "The case for open access to medical research is even stronger than it is for basic research in biology. The National Institutes of Health in the United States alone spends over $28 billion on biomedical research. Everyone in the country - and around the world - should have access to the results of those studies," commented Joseph L. Goldstein, a member of the PLoS Medicine editorial board and Nobel Prize winner in medicine based at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas.
PLoS Medicine will be overseen by PLoS Senior Editors Barbara
Cohen, former editor of Nature Genetics and former executive editor of
the Journal of Clinical Investigation, and Virginia Barbour, a physician
and haematologist and former executive editor of the Lancet. Working closely
with members of the editorial board and in consultation with the wider
medical and health research community, they will develop an open-access
forum for important studies and for discussion of medical research and
practice in the broader context of global health and social responsibility.
Barbara Cohen (US)
Virginia Barbour (UK)
For more information about the Public Library of Science, see http://www.plos.org
For more information about PLoS Medicine, see http://www.plosmedicine.org