Gold value trumps costs

August 2, 2012

The government's plan to make publicly funded scientific research available for free is a major tipping point in academia ("Government and funders move to make Finch a reality", www.timeshighereducation.co.uk, 16 July). We at the Institution of Engineering and Technology have already taken the decision to offer open-access options in existing journals as well as launching an engineering "mega-journal" to extend the choices available to authors and help ensure that interdisciplinary research finds a wider audience.

At a time when university budgets are already stretched, some will baulk at the potential costs of transition, but over the longer term the benefits in innovation and economic growth will more than make up for this.

Open access is not something that can be rolled out overnight, but ultimately this is a positive move, as it means the world's leading research will become accessible to a much wider audience.

Daniel Smith, Head of academic publishing, Institution of Engineering and Technology

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