On 22 February, the Office of Science and Technology Policy directed the heads of federal agencies to each develop a plan to support increased public access to the results of research funded by the federal government. This includes any results published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals and digital scientific data that are based on research that directly arises from federal funds.

The requirement applies to federal agencies that support over $100 million in annual research and development; this includes the National Science Foundation, Departments of Agriculture and Energy, National Institutes of Health, and Environmental Protection Agency, among others.

Agencies were instructed to leverage existing archives for posting final peer-reviewed manuscripts or final published documents. A 12 month embargo period after publication is suggested as a guideline, but agencies can tailor their individual plans. Moreover, agencies must provide a mechanism for stakeholders to petition to change the embargo period for a specific scientific discipline.

Agencies have six months to devise their draft plans for complying with the memo.

 


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