About 300 participants – scientists from universities and research institutes, publishers, representatives from EU member states and the European Commission – attended the two-day conference ‘Open Science – From Vision to Action’ last 4 and 5 April. The Amsterdam call for action on Open Science is the key outcome of the conference, organised by Dutch State Secretary for Education, Culture and Science Sander Dekker as part of the Netherlands EU Presidency.

Open Science is one of the Dutch EU presidency’s priorities in the field of research and innovation. The Dutch Presidency Open Science Conference focused on Open Access to scholarly publications and re-use of research data. This is important not only for researchers and students but also for many people outside the universities, who currently have no access or need to pay high fees for it. If all scientific publications are made available online, free of charge, and research data is used more effectively, everyone will benefit from it. For example, doctors can learn about the latest developments in treatment methods, entrepreneurs and businesses can apply scientific findings to accelerate product innovation, and teachers can use them more often in their lessons.

The action plan

The Amsterdam call for action on Open Science is the key outcome of the two-day conference ‘Open Science – From Vision to Action’. This action plan contains specific objectives and action points to speed the transition to Open Science in Europe. The conference has adopted three main goals to realise a common EU approach:

  1. Full Open Access for all publicly funded scientific publications by 2020
  2. Open Data as the standard for all publicly funded research
  3. More Open Science, which will maximise its effectiveness and its impact on society and the economy

The Open Science ‘Amsterdam’ action agenda speaks for itself: scientists should be ready to embrace Open Access and Open Data as part of an Open Science agenda for Europe. In the years ahead, VSNU (Association of universities in the Netherlands) intends to continue the concerted European push to translate this ‘call for action’ into real ‘action’.

Source: EU action plan for Open Science  (The Netherlands EU Presidency 2016 news item 6 April 2016)

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