This is a guest post by Ursula Rabar, Project Community Manager at OPERAS.
In January 2024, a new open access policy from UKRI for monographs, book chapters and edited collections comes into force. Jisc is supporting the implementation of this policy, and we feel that participation in the PALOMERA project will be of mutual benefit to Jisc and its members as we start to build up knowledge of the open access (OA) books policy landscape across the European Research Area (ERA). We hope that our experience of implementing an OA books strategy in the UK will be of use to our colleagues in Europe.
PALOMERA stands for Policy Alignment of Open Access Monographs in the European Research Area. The project has been funded for two years (2023-24) under the Horizon Europe: Reforming and enhancing the European R&I System with the aim of understanding why so few OA funder policies include books, and how this can be changed. It will:
- Collect and analyse a wide variety of data source related to open access book publishing and funder policies across geographies, languages, economies, and disciplines within the ERA, creating a Knowledge Base that will structure and make available knowledge to explain the challenges and bottlenecks that hold back open access to academic books
- Create a forum for funders to focus specifically on OA books and related issues
- Produce actionable recommendations and resources to support funder and institutional policies for OA books, with the overall objective of speeding up the transition to open access for books to further promote open science
- Address all relevant stakeholders (research funders and institutions, researchers, publishers, infrastructure providers, libraries, and national policymakers), facilitating co-creation and validation events throughout the project to ensure that the views and voices of all relevant stakeholders are represented
As a partner in PALOMERA, Jisc is working across all work packages in the project. We are supporting IBL PAN and other project partners by collecting documentation (policies and contextual material) for funders and institutions in the UK and Ireland. This will be collated and released as a Zotero collection later in the project. We will then follow this up (alongside other partners) with a survey of key stakeholders, and interviews to obtain in-depth contextual knowledge.
You can help shape PALOMERA’s outputs and recommendations by contributing knowledge and expertise and offering feedback as the project progresses. The Open Access Books Network (OABN) are holding a series of engagement events to support PALOMERA and you can also follow OPERAS and the OABN on Twitter for regular updates.