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« Open Archives (OA) and direct scientific communication (DSC) between scientists ». Les archives ouvertes et la communication scientifique directe: un nouvel espace de liberté pour les chercheurs.

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open archives oa and direct scientific communication dsc between scientists
« Open Archives (OA) and direct scientific communication (DSC) between scientists »

Les archives ouvertes et la communication scientifique directe: un nouvel espace de liberté pour les chercheurs

Colloque « Evolution of scientific publications: the point of view of scientists » (14-15 May 2007)

Franck Laloë, laboratoire Kastler Brossel (ENS, Paris)

outline of the talk
Outline of the talk
  • Self-archiving and Direct Scientific Communication
  • A new space for scientific freedom
  • What scientific communities expect from OA
  • The Hal project: objectives, present state
open access and open archives oa vs oa in particular oap
Open Access and Open Archives(OA vs. OA, in particular OAP)
  • Open acess includes two very different concepts:
  • Open archives, which are (open, open)
  • Open Acess Publishing (OAP), where the traditional scheme (open, pays) is replaced by (pays, open)
  • Two financial models; in OAP, the latter replaces the former:
  • « reader (library, consortium) pays »
  • « author (institution/consortium) pays »

Here I will discusss only open archives/self-archiving,

« direct scientific communication » (DSC)

self archiving direct scientific communication dsc the revival of an old tradition
Self-archivingDirect Scientific Communication (DSC),the revival of an old tradition

DSC is a revival of the old tradition of direct exchange of (hand written) letters between « natural philosophers »

Peer-reviewed journals, as we know them today, started around 1940-50. Peer review is useful (selection, improvements suggested by the referees, etc..); it also has a cost. Someone has to pay for the process, either from the author of reader side.

Open archives (self-archiving) are about 15 years old (ArXiv). They have other complementary features that makes them very useful also. Research needs them too!

The two channels seem to coexist rather peacefully.

self archiving in open archives oa
Self-archiving in Open Archives (OA)
  • Scientific documents (articles, theses) are uploaded by the author (or someone in the same lab) into a central base (*)
  • Instantaneous free access to all the scientific information in a field of research in one place
  • Good for research in developing countries

(*) one can also self-archive into personal sites, laboratory sites, etc.. ; we come back to this point later.

a new space for scientific freedom
A new space for scientific freedom
  • More direct control of the author(s) onto the text; misprints, length of the text, etc.
  • One cas attach related documents to the main text (useful in many fields of research)
  • Versioning is possible (OA are no longer only preprint servers!)
  • A document can continue to be alive after publication in a journal!
the expectations of scientific communities 1
The expectations of scientific communities (1)
  • Garanteed free access to full text; garanteed file readibility
  • Homogeneity of the scientific content
  • Connected to international bases (ArXiv, PMC, etc.)
  • Stability of http addresses: essential to be able to cite the work; no withdrawal of documents (if only to avoid fraud), but versioning possible (as errata in journals)
  • Long term stability: migrations should be performed by specialized centers in time (hard and soft).
the expectations of scientific communities 2
The expectations of scientific communities (2)
  • Auxiliary services: automatic extraction of lists of publications (authors, labs), of the scientific production of an institution, etc..
  • A single deposit, even if the article results from a collaboration, or if the lab belongs to several institutions. In many fields of research, it is rare that an article « belongs » to a single institution.
additional requirements from pluridisciplinarity
Additional requirements from pluridisciplinarity
  • Some disciplins have their own requirements: MESH compatibility for life sciences, ADS bibcode for astrophysics, REPEC for economy, etc..
  • They may also wish to have their own view of the generic archive (e.g. humanities)
  • A pluridisciplinary archive must treat the metadata, the protocols, etc.. in a disciplin-dependent way.
what scale is appropriate for an oa
What scale is appropriate for an OA?
  • Many choices are possible: personal sites, lab site, department, institution, consortia of institutions, country,… planet, galaxy. Yes, small is beautiful.. but with a short lifetime!
  • Institutional level: a possibility thas has advantages, but:
  • not cost/labour effective
  • not easy to implement single deposit
  • danger: Babel tower (contents of metadata)
  • danger: mixing various types of documents (reports, data, etc.)
  • too « provincial » (narrow) for scientists!
a model arxiv
A model: ArXiv
  • The « Los Alamos preprint base» started in 1991 (Paul Ginsparg) and soon became « ArXiv » (*). Now hosted at Cornell University.
  • Convenient: all the info is in one single place, one does not have to remember publication references, etc.
  • 400.000 documents ! 4000 new documents added each month; constant rate increase.
  • Covers a large part of physics and maths, a little bit of biology.

(*) Joanne Cohn, a cosmologist now in Berkeley, was a precursor

d claration of the french acad mie des sciences
Déclaration of the French « Académie des Sciences »

On the 5th. of july 2005, the French « Académie des Sciences » released a supporting open archives at a large scale; see:

La recommandation pousse vers la réalisation d’une archive regroupant le maximum possible d’établissements de recherche français, au lieu d’une dispersion dans des archives institutionnelles indépendantes

the hal project 1
The Hal project (1)
  • In view of all these requirements, a consortium of institutions seemed to be the best solution (for France). The Hal project started in 2000.
  • Objectives:
  • offer to all disciplines the tools that are so useful in physics (ArXiv model)
  • collecting full text scientific documents/articles and PHD theses
  • be useful to scientists by garanteeing a reasonably homogeneous scientific quality (indepentently of the editorial destiny of a document)
the hal project 2
The Hal project (2)
  • Not restricted to French scientists!
  • Research oriented. Users = researchers
  • Covers virtually all disciplins
  • Imports metadata from PM and ADS, exports full text documents to ArXiv and PMC, etc.
  • Exports metadata through many protocols (OAI, Repec, etc.)
  • Also provides auxiliary administrative services
hal institutional portals

Hal institutional portals














PMC, ArXiv, REPEC, ..

statistics full texts only
Statistics (full texts only)

about 15% of documents are PHD theses

statistics 2
Statistics (2)

The French scientific output is about 10 000 articles per month

et au niveau europ en
Et au niveau européen?

"Digital Repository Infrastructure Vision for European Research"

Open Access to research information is vital for researchers and helps the public appreciation and understanding of science. DRIVER will be helping countries to create networks of openly-accessible repositories for research information.

The project is a joint collaboration between ten international partners with the intention to create a knowledge base of European research. DRIVER will put a test-bed in place across Europe to assist the development of a knowledge infrastructure for the European Research Area…..