Open Access/Data

Open Access usually refers to the open-access movement, the worldwide movement to disseminate scientific and scholarly research literature online, free of charge and free of unnecessary licensing restrictions. (See Wikipedia entry, Public Library of Science) See also the Open Definition initiative.

The Imaginary Journal of Poetic Economics

A very interesting and creative blog on open access. Their description pretty much sums up my own viewpoint and hopes for open access thereby allowing me to introduce myself to Digital Copyright!

Anyone want to do an interesting study? What would the impact of Open Access for education be on our trade deficit?

Michael Geist blogged today about the increase in our cultural trade deficit, largely with the United States (See WorldMapper visual from 2002).

The Statistics Canada study he linked to indicates the following breakdown of what we were importing:

Canadians imported mainly books and newspapers from the United States. For every $10 of culture goods Canadians imported from the United States, $7.61 were spent on writing and published works, $0.85 on film and video, and $0.58 on advertising. The remainder was spread among sound recordings, photography and original art.

Standards coucil makes public request for input on open source software

On the website of the Standards Council for Canada earlier this month, the agency asks for input relating to a proposal to adopt Open Office XML as the international standard.

read the press release

The deadline for comments is in July. Go to the link to give your input.

Independent open-access Canadian medical journal launches

OTTAWA, April 18, 2007 — Open Medicine, a peer-reviewed general medical journal, will launch today using a bold publishing model: It will publish independently of a commercial publisher or medical association, leave the ownership of articles in the hands of authors and make all content freely and immediately available online at

Read full press information.

Canada drops licences and adopts free model for map data

In a Guardian article by Charles Arthur the recent decision by Natural Resources Canada to release maps and other data free from the Geogratis portal is looked at as an example the UK should follow.

Canada's New Government Provides Free Online Access to Digital Mapping Data

A Government of Canada press release for April 4 states:

Experts and other users of digital topographic data will no longer have to pay to use digital versions of government maps and data. The Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources, today announced that as of April 1, 2007, Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) began making its electronic topographic mapping data available to all users free of charge over the Internet.

This is great news. I am hoping that something similar can be announced by the Minister for Democratic Reform about the Postal codes by federal ridings file (Search this BLOG for PCFRF) that is needed to allow sites like this one to allow citizens to look up their elected Member of Parliament based on their postal code. We have a letter we are asking people to send to their MP, and this is an issue often talked about in the Citizens for Open Access to Civic Information and Data mailing list. (See Wiki page for "Postal Codes")

Open Access course at the University of British Columbia

Heather Morrison will be teaching a course on OA this spring at the School of Library, Archival, and Information Studies (SLAIS) at the University of British Columbia. The course outline includes:

The open access movement is one of the key trends in librarianship today, one that presents librarians and archivists with challenges, but also significant opportunities for leadership. This course will provide students with an overview of open access, key definitions, how and why libraries and archives are involved in open access, trends, policies, and implications for librarians and archivists.

Open Access Reshaping Rules of Research

Michael Geist's weekly Law Bytes column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) focuses on the growing global demand for open access, a trend that is forcing researchers, publishers, universities, and funding agencies to reconsider their role in the creation and dissemination of knowledge.

Digital Info Strategy Requires Courage Before Cash

Michael Geist's weekly Law Bytes column (Toronto Star version, Weblog version) examines efforts in Canada to develop a national digital information strategy. The column argues that the government would do well to resist introducing expensive new initiatives by first maximizing the benefits that can be extracted from the current set of policies and programs. Immediate steps could include promotion of open access for federally funded research, adding a digital copy to the legal deposit program, and addressing some relatively non-controversial copyright issues.

Geist calls for 'open access' government research

This article by Laura Eggertson includes:

The University of Ottawa professor uses an international conference to offer his critique of the public sector's approach to intellectual property, including its use of open source software.
Brazil and other countries lead the way by using open-source software that allows the public to access and distribute technology, Geist said.

Syndicate content