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Statement on open access from the Russell Group

The Russell Group of UK universities has released a statement on Scholarly Communication and Publishing (see update April 2010 below) supporting the use of Open Access repositories and encouraging the exploration of alternate and new approaches to scholarly communication. It echoes the findings of the Parliamentary Select Committee, in believing that " the current system of scholarly publishing does not always work in the best interests of the research community".

The Russell Group is an organisation representing 19 of the major research-led universities in the UK. As such, the group is a significant body in UK research, with member universities accounting for over 60% (more than 1.5 billion) of UK Universities' research grant and contract income in 2001/2.

At present 16 out of the 19 universities in the Group have active institutional repositories, which are listed on this site.

Update: April 2010

The Russell Group Statement no longer appears on its website: this is being followed up for clarification. The statement read as follows:


The Russell Group, in association with the Joint CURL/SCONUL Scholarly Communications Group, has adopted the following statement on scholarly communication and publishing.

* The Russell Group supports the principle that publicly-funded research should be publicly available.
* The Russell Group believes that the current system of scholarly publishing does not always work in the best interests of the research community.
* Russell Group institutions support the development of institutional repositories of research papers, and will actively encourage their researchers to deposit their work in them.
* The publication charge model of journal publishing is still in its early stages but warrants further consideration. The Russell Group would encourage further research and development on the feasibility of the model.
* The Russell Group supports discussion of these issues in fora such as UUK, RCUK and Government departments, as well as within institutions.


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