Free access to published papers funded by DBT, DST soon

Taking a major policy decision, the Department of Biotechnology and Department of Science & Technology will make the sharing of research papers mandatory, thereby allowing open and unrestricted access to research papers funded by these agencies


This policy applies to individual scientists or institutions or aided autonomous institutions who benefit directly or indirectly from the infrastructure and core funding provided by DBT/DST.

If implemented, this policy from India's reputed funding agencies, will surely be called a major reform in Indian science. The two leading agencies, the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST) that are constituents within the Ministry of science and technology have prepared an open policy for unrestricted access to research papers published through their funding support.

The agencies intend to create a central repository for published papers to make them accessible and thus help maintain a database as well. Besides that, the much required clarity on funding norms can also become transparent due to high level scrunity of papers by the stakeholders.

As per the issued circular, the policy is open to public for comments by July 25, 2014. The collective statement of the agencies specifies that since all funds disbursed by them are public funds, it is important that the information and knowledge generated through the use of these funds are made publicly available as soon as possible. This surely is a historical staement in the context of the present circumtances in the country when public awareness is increasing at a rapid speed.

It would be mandatory to deposit the manuscript in the grantee's own institution's interoperable institutional repository (IR). If the institution does not yet have an IR of its own, then the paper should be deposited in the central repository. Unless the deposit ID is quoted in the project report as well as in future proposals for funding, the proposals will not be considered. In rare cases where the PI or head of the institution has some valid reasons for not complying with these requirements, they should give a suitable explanation in the final report.


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P.K.Seth 9 July 2014 at 05:58 AM

Great step for Indian Science. Should be implemented fast. Other funding agencies ICAR, CSIR and ICMR should follow


Rahul Koul Fri Jul 11 at 03:38 PM

Dr Seth, Sir thanks for your valuable comments. Lets hope it happens soon and translates into lot of product development too.

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