Neelie Kroes given open access award

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Open-access publisher BioMed Central (BMC) has presented its Open Access Advocacy Award for 2014 to Neelie Kroes, the European Commission vice-president for the Digital Agenda.

Kroes has been the Dutch member of the European Commission for almost 10 years and has been responsible for the Digital Agenda for the past four and a half years. BMC explained that 'during this period, she has brought the open-access agenda to the forefront of the spirited discussion on the future of science and research in Europe. Openness has been one of the main themes of this term, during which the Commission has proposed, and the European Parliament and Council of Ministers have agreed, that all articles produced with funding from FP7 and Horizon 2020 must be published using open access.'

BMC continued: 'Wide-ranging discussions on how to make data open as well have also begun. Ms Kroes has spoken, tweeted and blogged widely on the subject, bringing knowledge about open access to many more people. The award recognises the key role that Ms Kroes had played, especially with respect to drawing media attention to open access.'

During the presentation of the award, Kroes said: 'Open access is an essential building block for what we increasingly see in all academic disciplines: open, digital science and research. That is why I have always strongly supported it. I accept this award because it also recognises all the hard work done by my colleagues in the Commission as well as science policy makers in the Member States and the practitioners we support on the ground. Without them, open science would not be where it is today.'