Achieving open access to conservation science

Fuller, R.A., J.R. Lee and J.E.M. Watson (2014). Achieving Open Access to Conservation Science. Conservation Biology, 6: 1550-1557.

Conservation science is a crisis discipline in which the results of scientific enquiry must be made available quickly to those implementing management. We show that 8.7 percent of science are freely downloadable and < 5 percent meet the standard definition of open access. This compares poorly with a comparable set of evolutionary biology - a non crisis discipline - where 31.9 percent of papers are freely downloadable and 7.5 percent are open access. It time for conservation journals to consider more cost effective models for open access, for conservation-oriented organizations running journals consider a broader range of options for open access to nonmembers, and conservation scientists to be open to pay for open access on a per-article basis to make science more accessible for those who need it.

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