Faculty to Vote on Open Access Policy

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Whether it’s deciding what type of cancer treatment is most effective or formulating an argument to support a scientific theory, being aware of the latest research is essential to how people make decisions. But getting your hands on these studies can be an expensive challenge for people who don’t have access to scholarly journals.          

To remedy this problem, Georgia Tech wants to adopt an open access policy that would make much of the research conducted at the Institute free and accessible to all.  

“An open access policy would allow faculty members to retain some copyrights to their research publications and have the option to place them in the SMARTech repository — which is accessible to anyone in the world,” said Ellen Zegura, co-chair of the subcommittee on open access and a professor in the School of Computer Science. “And faculty members could opt out if they weren’t interested in participating.”

Zegura and fellow co-chair Steve McLaughlin have worked with a team of representatives from across all campus colleges and Georgia Tech Research Institute to draft a policy that suits the needs of Georgia Tech faculty.

Over the next few months, a series of town halls will be held to provide faculty members the opportunity to share feedback regarding the policy, and in November, the faculty will vote on whether to adopt it. The town halls will be held from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on the following dates:

  • Wednesday, Sept. 12, Room 117, Student Services Buildings
  • Monday, Sept. 24, Room 144, Clough Commons
  • Wednesday, Oct. 10, Room 175, Tech Square Research Building

For more information, contact Zegura or McLaughlin.

Open Access FAQ

Why is this policy necessary now?
Open access is already required by a growing number of funding agencies, and a number of institutions such as Duke and Princeton have created open access policies. In addition, creating a policy on this issue provides Tech with an opportunity to help frame the debate on a state level. At this point, no other state institutions have such a policy.  

Can I opt out?
Yes. There will be a simple, opt-out procedure. No questions will be asked if you choose not to participate.

Do academic journals support these policies?
Many academic journals are moving in the direction of support for open access publishing. There is variability across fields, but in general, journals recognize that the publishing landscape is changing rapidly and that journals will need to make changes to maintain viability and value.



  • Workflow Status:Published
  • Created By:Amelia Pavlik
  • Created:09/05/2012
  • Modified By:Fletcher Moore
  • Modified:10/07/2016