Excerpt from The Scientist, 21 April 2006:
A European Commission report this month urged science funders to guarantee open access to research outputs. Meanwhile, the umbrella group for Britain's research councils is still working on its own policy, 10 months after releasing a draft policy on open access.
The EU report, published at the beginning of April, recommends that European funding agencies promote and support the archiving of publications in open repositories. "This archiving could become a condition for funding," its authors suggest.
The report doesn't directly call for funders to mandate open access, but it is still big news, said Peter Suber from the Open Access Project at Public Knowledge, an advocacy group that focuses on the dissemination of information. In his long-running blog, Suber said: If the authors are distinguishing a guarantee from a mandate, then I'd like to hear more about it. But 'even' a guarantee would be extremely welcome.