Good news from Great Britain: The British government has announced its plans to make all British scientific research that is funded by tax money, freely accessible within the next few years. This means that these British scientific papers can no longer be published with scientific publishers that put research behind online paywalls, but instead have to be published with open access publishers.
This radical transformation should take up to two years, the universities and science minister David Willetts has stated in an interview with the Guardian. “”This will take time to build up, but within a couple of years we should see this fully feeding through.” In 2014, the new system should be in place.
British universities now pay around £200m a year in subscription fees to journal publishers, to access research that was funded by British tax money. “If the taxpayer has paid for this research to happen, that work shouldn’t be put behind a paywall before a British citizen can read it,” Willetts said.