Help yourself! Free knowledge for one and all
While books printed on paper and bound are wonderful, they must be physically in your possession or you have to make your way to a library to read them. The Internet, however, provides a wholly different level of flexibility and accessibility – particularly when books can be downloaded at no cost. In order to help to make knowledge produced in and about Nordic countries easily available for free, Nordforsk, together with much of the Nordic Council of Ministers, has decided that all of its publications will be available in Open Access and, thus, only a mouse-click away.
Gunnel Gustafsson, Director of NordForsk, says:
- I am very pleased that knowledge currently produced by NordForsk will be freely available to anyone who is interested. One example is the recently published report, Comparing Research at Nordic Universities using Bibliometric Indicators, which is now freely available via the new portal. This publication provides insight into the publishing activity of 41 universities and 23 university hospitals, and will be of interest to many different kinds of users.
In a longer-term perspective, we are looking forward to being able to publish the findings from all research cooperation funded by NordForsk in the e-collection. It is beneficial for all that the findings resulting from the public resources administered by NordForsk are made more easily accessible to the public sector. It is an important means of disseminating knowledge. In addition to the new bibliometrics report, the e-collection already contains several thousand other books, journals, reports and work papers on everything from Nordic innovation and research to cross-border obstacles and statistics on the Nordic countries.
The new e-collection was developed by Uppsala University Library and is based on Open Source software. Its launch represents a step in the implementation of the Open Access mandate approved by the Nordic Council of Ministers Secretary General, Dagfinn Høybråten.
The mandate includes a requirement that all publications published and funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Secretariat and institutions will in future be Open Access, i.e. as a minimum available as free downloads.
This step has been taken to improve access to the many hundreds of publications that the NCM publishes every year, and to send a clear signal to the world that we in the Nordic Region support democratic principles such as transparency and equal access for all, in deeds as well as in words.
- Via its projects and institutions, the Nordic Council of Ministers is strongly committed to knowledge development across a broad front. Open Access allows us to make this breadth of generated knowledge openly accessible and strengthens the foundation for further innovation, both within and outside of the framework of Nordic co-operation, says Dagfinn Høybråten.
The Nordic Council of Ministers is responsible for inter-governmental co-operation in the Nordic Region and has an annual budget of just under DKK 1 billion. As well as its Secretariat in Copenhagen, the Council of Ministers has 16 offices and institutions and works with whole host of other organisations. NordForsk is the largest of these institutions.
The e-collection: http://norden.diva-portal.org