Friday, June 11, 2010

Discussing UCIP with QUT DVC Tom Cochrane

I was so engrossed in the conversation I had with Tom Cochrane yesterday, I forgot to ask him for a quick video summary of his points for the UCIP miniconference this afternoon! He visits Canberra once a month, so I might be able to get something from him next visit.

Tom is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Technology, Information and Learning Support at Queensland University of Technology. He and QUT have been advocates and practitioners of openness in their academic work since 2003 and according to Tom, publish over 65% of their work as open access, (but I'm looking for evidence..). QUT host and support Creative Commons Australia.

In our meeting yesterday, Tom mentioned:

The pioneering and sustained work of Stevan Harnad, and the American Scientist Open Access Forum - opening up a whole knowledge network I have not seen before - even after following the Open Education movement since 2005!

Danny Kingsley, employed by ANU in the Centre for Public Awareness for Science, and advocating the development of their own open access repository, after completing a PhD, The effect of scholarly communication practices on open access: An Australian study of three disciplines.

Big news to come, that the National Health and Medical Research Council will be following suite with other public information agencies, and adopting open access licensing policy for publicly funded research. I'm hunting any evidence of this move, I'm guessing there is a press release coming out soon...

The notorious copyright monopoly, Copyright Agency Limited will be reviewing its terms of service with the Universities at the end of June. There is a justified build up of disrespect for CAL, in that they draw huge money out of education, based on arbitrary copying statistics; pay their own staff pretty high wages for what they do; helping publishers double dip in fee takings; not accounting for free content use; and helping to generate an economy of user pay information where such a transaction was not intended by a great many authors... oh the list goes on. This review could be an opportunity to call them to account on some of these issues, and to propose more exact accounting of copyuse, including the savings gained through the use of free and open content. Up until now, CAL has shown no interest in supporting or promoting cost savings through free content. If the trend towards such content continues, obviously CALS s days are numbered.

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