Picture by Daniel Mietchen – licensed under a Creative Commons (BY 3.0)

In Feburary 2002 the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI) launched a worldwide campaign for open access (OA). Even if they did not invent the idea, the initiative did the first major international statement and a public definition of open access.

Now, ten years later, they made new recommendations for the next ten years. The new recommendations count more than 2500 words and are pretty detailed on what has to be encouraged and done to get open access from a concept to a sustainable process. However, the original definition of open access has been reaffirmed:

By “open access” to [peer-reviewed research literature], we mean its free availability on the public internet, permitting any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles, crawl them for indexing, pass them as data to software, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without financial, legal, or technical barriers other than those inseparable from gaining access to the internet itself. The only constraint on reproduction and distribution, and the only role for copyright in this domain, should be to give authors control over the integrity of their work and the right to be properly acknowledged and cited.

In order to make the important document more accessible, I summarized the 2012 recommendations in five points and less than 350 words::

  1. Repository: Every institution of higher education should have access to an open access repository (participate in a consortium or arrange to outsource repository services) and every publishing scholar in every field and country, including those not affiliated with institutions of higher education, should have deposit rights.
  2. Policy: Every institution of higher education, public or private research funding agency should have a policy assuring that all future scholarly articles by faculty members and all future theses and dissertations are made open access as soon as practicable and deposit these in the institution’s designated open access repository. We recommend Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) or an equivalent license as the optimal license for the publication, distribution, use, and reuse of scholarly work.
  3. Tools & technology: Research institutions, including research funders, should support the development and maintenance of the tools, directories, and resources essential to the progress and sustainability of open access. Open access repositories should provide tools and APIs, already available at no charge, to convert deposits made in PDF format into machine-readable formats such as XML and the used repositories should acquire the means to harvest from and re-deposit to other repositories, make download, usage, and citation data available to their authors and to the tools computing alternative impact metrics.
  4. Impact Factor: We therefore discourage the use of classic journal impact factors as surrogates for the quality of journals, articles, or authors. We encourage the development of alternative metrics for impact and quality which are less simplistic, more reliable, and entirely open for use and reuse.
  5. Advocacy & coordination: The open access community should act in concert more often and we should do more to make universities, publishers, editors, referees and researchers aware of standards of professional conduct for open access publishing. We also need to articulate more clearly, with more evidence, and to more stakeholder groups the advantages and potentials of open access

If you want to know more about the recommendations read the full version here or watch the talk at the BOAI 10 conference about “The Budapest Open Access Initiative at 10 – Recommendations for the next ten years“ (by Alma Swan, Director of European Advocacy, SPARC Europe and Key Perspectives):

Disclamer: The Hybrid Publishing Lab translated also the long version of the BOAI 10 recommendations into German language.

Christian Heise


Research Associate at the Hybrid Publishing Lab and Member of Board of the Open Knowledge Foundation Germany, currently working on his Ph.D thesis about Open Science. More about me...

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  1. 2012 in review: Set the Default to Open Access › Hybrid Publishing Lab - December 31, 2012

    […] In Feburary 2002 the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI) launched a worldwide campaign for open access (OA) with a public statement of principles relating to open access to the research literature. Ten years later, in 2012, the original BOAI definition of open access has been reaffirmed and they have made new recommendations for the next ten years. The 2012 recommendations count more than 2500 words and are pretty detailed on what has to be done to get open access from a concept to a sustainable process. The Hybrid Publishing Lab did the official german translation of 2012 recommendations and published a summary in five points and less than 350 words. […]

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