The Australasian Open Access Strategy Group (AOASG) welcomes the Australian Government’s support for open access as noted in its response to the recommendations from the Productivity Commission Inquiry into Intellectual Property Arrangements. In accepting Recommendation 16.1, which states that: “The Australian, and State and Territory governments should implement an open access policy for publicly funded research.”, that “this should occur within 12 months of publication” and that “The policy should minimise exemptions.”, the Government has sent a strong signal on the importance of such policies.
One implemented, this step will place Australia among the leading edge of countries who are seeking to maximize the availability, use and re-use of publicly funded research. It will also position Australia well for international collaborations. We would urge that open access policies are as closely aligned as possible, if not identical, at the Federal and State and Territory level in order to reduce uncertainty among those that will have to comply with them.
It will be essential to ensure that strong incentives are provided for making research openly available and to invest in the infrastructure and communities of practice to support these policies. Current ongoing work, such as defining how research outputs should be made F.A.I.R. (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable), will support the implementation of these policies.