eLife supports the White House petition for public access: Join us

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Dear Colleagues,

I urge you to sign the White House petition requiring free access to scientific journal articles arising from taxpayer-funded research. The petition is open to U.S. and non-U.S. citizens. Please sign today and encourage your colleagues, family, and friends to do the same.

We at eLife believe that unfettered online access to research results is the key to realizing maximum possible impact for our works. We believe that, by making our results available to all who could benefit from and build upon them, we are accelerating the pace of science and increasing the importance of every one of our individual contributions.

A critical opportunity has emerged to help expand access to research way beyond that published in any given journal. The U.S. government is considering extending the NIH policy for public access to published results to the other agencies that fund scientific research and will consider action if a new petition garners 25,000 signatures by June 19. It’s an important time in American politics, as candidates for the Presidential election begin to isolate those issues they’ll prioritize for the campaign season.

The NIH policy funds over $29 billion annually in research and, as a result of the policy, the estimated 90,000 papers inspired by that funding must be made openly available through PubMed Central (PMC) within 12 months of publication in a journal. NIH-funded authors therefore now benefit from exposure to the broadest possible audience, if they didn’t initially publish the findings in an open-access venue. PMC attracts more than 450,000 unique users each weekday.

Help us advance wider access to findings and increased impact for published works. Join me and my colleagues at eLife and sign the petition today at https://wwws.whitehouse.gov/petitions/!/petition/require-free-access-over-internet-scientific-journal-articles-arising-taxpayer-funded-research/wDX82FLQ.

Qualified signers must be at least 13 years old, have a valid email address, and may reside inside or outside the U.S.

To learn more about the NIH Public Access Policy, visit http://publicaccess.nih.gov.

To learn more about open access, visit http://www.elifesciences.org/the-journal/open-access.

If you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to contact me or Mark Patterson, eLife’s managing executive director, through m.patterson [at] elifesciences [dot] org. You may also comment online.

Randy

Randy Schekman

HHMI Investigator

Editor-in-Chief, eLife

Dept. of Mol. and Cell Biology

Li Ka Shing Center

UC Berkeley

Berkeley, CA 94720-3370