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Open-access plan fixes some problems, but others remain

The EU’s strategy for scholarly publishing might reverse the commercialisation of open access, but looks unlikely to halt the decline in libraries’ influence, says Ulrich Herb.

In 2002, the rewards of open-access publishing seemed straightforward. The declaration of the Budapest Open Access Initiative predicted the acceleration of science, democratisation of knowledge and an era of academic self-governance.

Now, the situation is more ambivalent. Open access has delivered on accelerating scientific communication, with open-access papers being cited much more than their paywalled counterparts. Self-governance and democratisation, on the other hand, are nowhere in sight. 

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