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Moving from Restrictive Dissemination of Publicly-Funded Kno to Open Knowledge Environments: A Case Study in Microbiology Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC 8 October 2009 by Paul F. Uhlir Director, Board on Research Data and Information National Research Council, U. S. Washington, DC [email protected] edu
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Acknowledgements Presentation based on forthcoming monograph by Jerome Reichman, Tom Dedeurwaerdere, and Paul Uhlir, Designing the Microbial Research Commons: New Strategies for Accessing, Managing, and Using Essential Public Knowledge Assets. The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Energy under grant no. 5 P 50 G 003391 -02.
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Comparison of some key characteristics of the print dissemination and digitally networked paradigms: n n n n PRINT (pre) Industrial Age fixed, static rigid physical local linear limited content and types distribution difficult, slow copying cumbersome, not perfect significant marginal distribution cost single user (or small group) centralized production slow knowledge diffusion GLOBAL DIGITAL NETWORKS post-industrial Information Age transformative, interactive flexible, extensible “virtual” global non-linear, asynchronous unlimited contents and multimedia easy and immediate dissemination copying simple and identical zero marginal distribution cost multiple, concurrent users/producers distributed and integrated production accelerated knowledge diffusion
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Advantages of open access to and unrestricted reuse of publicly generated or funded data and information on digital networks for science: n n n n Promotes interdisciplinary, inter-institutional, and international research; Enables automated knowledge discovery; Avoids inefficiencies, including duplication of research; Promotes new research and new types of research; Reinforces open scientific inquiry and encourages diversity of analysis and opinion; Allows for the verification of previous results; Makes possible the testing of new or alternative hypotheses and methods of analysis; Supports studies on data collection methods and measurement; Facilitates the education of new researchers; Promotes citizen scientists and serendipitous results, enabling the exploration of topics not envisioned by the initial investigators and the primary research community; Permits the creation of new data sets when data from multiple sources are combined; Promotes capacity building in developing countries and global research; Supports economic growth and social welfare; and Generally provides greater returns from public investments in research.
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Principles for deconstruction of institutional mechanisms for scholarly communication and reconstruction in networked context: 1. Maximize public good aspects of publicly funded research data and info 2. Avoid monopolies and artificial markets (service, not captured product) 3. Take advantage of zero marginal cost for global dissemination 4. Support freedom of inquiry and collaborative research 5. Optimize content for automated knowledge discovery tools 6. Maintain characteristics that are essential to the research community and the progress of science (quality control, reputational benefits, research impact, speed of publication, ease of access, long-term preservation and sustainability). Conclusion: Open access online and unrestricted reuse of research data and information produced from public funding is in most cases far superior to proprietary and restricted dissemination, which maximizes value for the disseminating organizations rather than for the content producer and user community. The question is: How to get there?
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Principal findings from our research on journals in microbiology and related life sciences: n n n About 30% full open access (OA), including hybrid (both purchased immediate OA and subscription); 20% read-only; 50% subscription. 80% of subscription journals allow author self-archiving on personal websites, but almost 90% do not allow archiving on the author’s institutional websites and most are silent on external repository deposits (e. g. , on Pub. Med. Central). 98% of subscription journals require transfer of copyright. About 75% of all journals surveyed are published by for-profit publishers. 96% of subscription journals give no direct discount to developing country subscribers (but some may participate in group discounts to libraries through the INASP or HINARI programs).
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Findings from research on databases used in microbial research: n n n Many molecular biology databases (genomic, proteomic) and taxonomic databases are openly available and free to use. Molecular biology data in specialized research (e. g. , energy and environment) not deposited and not available. Legal/policy/economic pressures to keep data secret either because of commercial potential, strategic advantage, or burden of making the data useful to others.
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons The inhospitable statutory legal environment: n Traditional copyright law under print paradigm more user friendly (e. g. , first sale doctrine), facts in public domain n Trend is for intellectual property rights (IPRs) to be longer (term of protection continually increased), broader (more material formerly in public domain protectable), and stronger (much stronger civil and even criminal penalties). n Digital copyright allows TPM protection of all material, even material in the public domain. n Database protection regimes in EU and other countries provide strong exclusive rights protection to factual compilations, even in government. n Restrictive contracts can override any statutory limitations and exceptions that would otherwise favor users and add other restrictions.
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Potential top-down solutions by legislatures and research funders: n n n More robust limitations and exceptions (L&Es) to traditional copyright law for non-profit, publicly funded research, including: (1) a more widely adopted idea-expression dichotomy (excluding ideas and facts from protection); (2) a more broadly adopted and strengthened “fair use” exception; (3) a total exemption for computational research; (4) a statutory exemption from copyright protection of all government works outside the US, placing all such works in the public domain. Allowing greater access and use for public research in digital copyright, including: allowed circumvention of TPMs (reverse notice and take down); limiting contractual overrides of statutory L&Es (a “public interest unconscionability doctrine”); and adding all copyright L&Es to database protection law in the EU and other jurisdictions. Research funder mandates (with enabling legislation) for author deposits, copyright retention with the authors, and expressed preferences and funding for publishing in OA journals.
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons n n n n n Bottom-up Initiatives—existing digital commons models and emerging open knowledge environments: Open-source software movement (e. g. , Linux and 10 Ks of other programs worldwide, many of which originated in academia for research applications); Distributed Grid computing or e-science (e. g. , [email protected]); Open data centers and archives (e. g. , Gen. Bank, Uniprot); Federated open data networks (e. g. , Global Biodiversity Information Facility); Open access journals (e. g. , PLOS + > 4300 scholarly journals, many in developing world—Sci. ELO, Bioline International, Hindawi Press); Open repositories for an institution’s scholarly works (+ > 300 formally registered globally on Open DOAR, plus 1000 s more not registered) Open repositories for publications in a specific subject area (e. g. , the physics ar. Xiv, Cog. Prints, Pub. Med. Central in US and UK); Free university curricula and lectures online (e. g. , the MIT Open. Course. Ware); Emerging discipline or applications commons, peer production of info, and integrated thematic open knowledge environments (e. g. , virtual observatories, wiki encyclopedias, subdiscipline OKEs).
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Vision for open knowledge environments (OKEs) at universities The restructuring of the print paradigm journal system through the formation of thematic OKEs in universities: n Organized around OA journals, gray literature, databases, OSS, and peer production of information in a focused thematic area. n Supporting and integrating the university mission of public knowledge creation, dissemination and use, and of education (enhanced U. S. law school prototype). n Common use licensing of content and tools (e. g. , CC, GNU), and technically optimized (semantic web) for broad access and reuse. n In-house and external OA content augmented by interactive collaboration tools in OKE, coupled with effective social networking and outreach. n Managed by academic departments that integrate domain discipline(s), computer engineers, information scientists, libraries, and other collaborating departments at one or more universities (a partnership or consortium). n Involving professors, students, and external consultants and services (e. g. , STM publishers, but that do not capture the content).
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Limitations on creating OKEs at universities: n Implementation and acceptance of new policy and institutional frameworks, frequently with conservative management and sociocultural milieu. n Development of adequate incentives for participation in OKE formation and use at the individual, community, institutional, and governmental levels. n Long-term financial sustainability of different OKE models (university OKEs should have low cost, high positive externalities). n Overcome pressures in universities to commercialize the OKE (e. g. , by University Presses). n In all cases, must balance with legitimate countervailing values and legal restrictions (protection of national security, privacy, confidentiality, and IPRs in bona fide commercial opportunities).
Symposium on Designing the Microbial Research Commons Additional works on various aspects of this topic (available freely online): q q q q Bits of Power: Issues in Global Access to Scientific Data (NAS, 1997) The Role of S&T Data and Information in the Public Domain (NAS, 2003). Reichman, J. H. and Paul F. Uhlir, “A Contractually Reconstructed Research Commons for Scientific Data in a Highly Protectionist Intellectual Property Environment, 66 Law & Contemporary Problems 315 -462 (2003). Paul F. Uhlir, “Policy Guidelines for the Development and Promotion of Governmental Public Domain Information” (UNESCO, 2004). Open Access and the Public Domain in Digital Data and Information for Science (NAS, 2004). Uhlir, “The emerging role of open repositories for scientific literature as a fundamental component of the public research infrastructure” (Polimetrica, 2006). Uhlir & Schröder, “Open Data for Global Science”, Data Science Journal, CODATA, (2007).