February 14, 2013
TO: Directors of ARL Libraries
FROM: Prue Adler
RE: Legislation Promoting Public Access to Federally Funded Research Introduced
Summary: Today, members of the House and Senate introduced the “Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act of 2013” or FASTR. The bill, similar to the Federal Research Public Access Act (FRPAA), includes provisions that would enable digital reuse of publicly funded research and would ensure free, timely, online access to the published results of research funded by federal science and technology agencies. Provisions in this bill constitute an important step forward that reflects both how research is conducted and growing community practice. This is a request for you to contact your House and Senate delegations and ask that they co-sponsor FASTR. I will provide you with bill numbers once available, likely as soon as tomorrow.
Background: FASTR would require those agencies with annual extramural research budgets of $100 million or more to provide the public with online access to research manuscripts (or final published articles under certain circumstances) stemming from such funding no later than six months after publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Within one year of enactment of FASTR, these agencies are to implement a public access policy and to the extent practicable, agencies should follow common procedures for the collection and deposition of research papers. The bill gives individual agencies flexibility in choosing the location of the digital repository to house this content, as long as the repositories meet conditions for interoperability, public accessibility and long-term preservation. An important change from past bills includes the need for agencies to provide, “ research papers…in formats and under terms that enable productive reuse, including computational analysis by state-of-the-art technologies.”
This is a request for you to contact members of your delegation and ask that they co-sponsor this legislation. If your Senator or Representative co-sponsored the legislation, please thank them! Co-sponsors include: Sens. Cornyn (R-TX) and Wyden (D-OR) and Reps. Doyle (D-PA), Lofgren (D-CA) and Yoder (R-KS). Specific information about the legislation is included below. My thanks in advance for your assistance in garnering additional support for this legislation. Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you!
Key provisions include: Every federal agency and department with an annual extramural research budget of $100 million or more will implement a public access policy that is consistent with and advances the federal purpose of the respective agency. Agencies would have one year from enactment of the legislation to develop implementation policies, which would be promulgated to affected researchers at the appropriate time. Each agency shall:
· Require each researcher – funded totally or partially by the agency – to submit to the agency an electronic copy of the final, electronic manuscript that has been accepted for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.
· Ensure that the manuscript is preserved in a stable, digital repository maintained by that agency or in another suitable repository that permits free public access, interoperability, and long-term preservation.
· Require that free, online access to each manuscript be available as soon as possible, and no later than six months after the article has been published in a peer-reviewed journal.
· Provide research papers in formats and under terms that enable productive reuse, including computational analysis by state-of-the-art technologies.
· Report to Congress each year on the effectiveness of the agency public access policy and examine whether such papers should be available via a “royalty-free copyright license that is available to the public and permits the reuse of those papers,” in effect by a CC-BY license.
This legislation applies to:
· Any researcher employed by a federal agency with an annual research budget exceeding $100 million who publishes an article (will be public domain) based on the work done for the funding agency in a peer-reviewed journal.
· Any researcher funded by a federal agency with an annual research budget exceeding $100 million who publishes an article based on the funded research in a peer-reviewed journal.
This legislation does not cover:
· The public access policy does not apply to laboratory notes, preliminary data analyses, author notes, phone logs, research progress reports presented at professional meetings or other information used to produce the final manuscript.
· The policy does not apply to classified research. Research that results in works that generate revenue or royalties for the author (such as books), or patentable discoveries, are exempt to the extent necessary to protect copyright or a patent.