The AnthroSource Steering Committee (ASSC) has publicly released its August 9 letter in support of FRPAA (Federal Research Public Access Act), dissenting from the position taken by its parent organization, the American Anthropological Association (AAA).
Excerpt from the letter:
To: Alan Goodman, President, American Anthropological Association
Deborah Heath, Chair, AAA Committee on Scientific Communication (CSC)
Fr: Suzanne Calpestri, Chair AnthroSource Steering Committee (ASSC)
Re: AAA and Federal Research Public Access Act of 2006 (FRPAA)
Cc: Bill Davis, Executive Director, American Anthropological Association
Jasper Simons, Dir. of Publications, American Anthropological Association
AnthroSource Steering Committee listserv
I am writing at the suggestion of Deborah Heath who has indicated that it would be useful to have a statement clarifying the views of the AnthroSource Steering Committee regarding FRPAA ( http://cornyn.senate.gov/doc_archive/05-02-2006_COE06461_xml.pdf) to which the AAA staff expressed opposition by signing a letter from the American Association of Publishers (AAP). (http://www.pspcentral.org/). Subsequently the AAA staff prepared a FAQ (link to FAQ ) explaining their opposition to the legislation. The Steering Committee’s views on the legislation itself and the substantive issues raised in the AAP letter and the AAA staff FAQ follow.
In early May 2006 The Federal Research Public Access Act of 2006 (FRPAA) was introduced into the U. S. Senate by Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Joseph Lieberman (D-CT). This legislation would require that federally funded research appearing in peer-reviewed journals be made openly accessible in digital repositories (either centralized subject-based or institutional repositories) within six months of publication. The legislation does not affect copyright and specifically excludes from deposit research notes, source data and preliminary analyses, classified or revenue-producing research and rejected manuscripts or manuscripts that were not submitted to a journal.
Why ASSC supports FRPAA
The ASSC stands in strong support of FRPAA because this legislation provides strategic infrastructure and impetus for achieving AnthroSource’s (and the AAA’s) mission regarding “increase[d] visibility of and access to anthropological knowledge.” In addition, by removing barriers to access, FRPAA enables the “development of global communities of interest based on anthropological knowledge.”
Of foremost importance, this legislation provides scholars increased access to the research of others so that they can build on that work and achieve greater understanding and better outcomes. Included among those who gain the most are those working outside major research institutions (for example, those working in small to medium size institutions, practicing anthropologists, and those working in developing countries). Other significant beneficiaries of interest to anthropologists are the communities of people in whose midst and with whose assent and help anthropologists conduct their studies.
Read the letter in its entirety: http://www.aaanet.org/press/ASSCletter.htm