Caltech Adopts Open Access Policy For Scholarly Writing

Dian Schaffhauser | Campus Technology | January 6, 2014

With the beginning of the new year, California Institute of Technology (Caltech) has implemented a new open-access policy for the scholarly writing done by its faculty. As decided by the faculty, starting on January 1, 2014, all members must agree to grant nonexclusive rights to Caltech to disseminate their scholarly papers. The goal is to encourage wider distribution of their work and simplify the copyright process when posting research on faculty or institutional Web sites.

"The decision of our faculty to make their papers freely accessible online will ensure that the global community of researchers, students and casual followers of science and engineering will learn about our work at earlier stages, enabling them to put it to use for the benefit of society," explained John Dabiri, chair of the Caltech faculty and professor of aeronautics and bioengineering at the Southern California institution.

Researchers and instructors at Caltech write more than 2,000 papers each year for a multitude of journals, each of which has its own policies regarding author copyright. The initiative was put in place to prevent publishers of those journals from threatening legal action or issuing takedown notices to authors who have posted their content on their own sites or to CaltechAUTHORS, the Institute's online repository.