The benefits of open access


Researchers’ work is based on research carried out previously and, therefore, researchers’ possibility to access and share scientific information determines its research potential.

The advent of the internet and electronic publication has resulted in unprecedented possibilities for the dissemination and exchange of information. Among the benefits of a fuller and wider access to research publications and data include:

  • Creation and dissemination of knowledge.
  • Accelerate innovation, as a result of reaching the market faster, which will in turn lead to faster growth.
  • Foster collaboration and reduce duplication of effort, with the corresponding increase in efficiency.
  • Involve citizens and society more efficiently through improved transparency of the scientific process.
  • Contribute to returns on investment in R+D for the benefit of society in general.
  • Lead to greater visibility and wider repercussions for scientific activity.
  • Help create a solid framework for universal access to scientific information.
  • Reach equality of access to information.
  • Reduce dissemination costs for institutions.
  • Increase the number of citations.

In summary, Open Access to scientific publications have a very positive impact on scientific progress and social return on public investment in R & D, in particular, with its enormous potential for increasing productivity, competitiveness and growth.

In turn, in terms of the potential economic impact of Open Access, the Europe 2020 strategy for a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy emphasizes the pivotal role of knowledge and innovation in the generation of growth. Open Access has an important role to play in this context:

  • Research results (publications and data) and in particular publicly-funded research results need to be circulated rapidly and widely, using digital media. This accelerates scientific discovery, enables new forms of data-intensive research and allows research findings to be systematically taken up by European business and industry.
  • In addition, Open Access is generating competition among well-established scientific publishers, and has stimulated the creation of new scientific publishers.