UK House of Lords launches OA inquiry

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The UK's House of Lords Science and Technology Committee has announced that it will hold its first evidence session next week as part of a new short inquiry into the Government’s open-access policy and its implementation by the Research Councils UK (RCUK) (the partnership of the UK’s seven research councils).

The committee will hear evidence from Janet Finch, chair of an independent working group set up by the UK Government to consider the best model for expanding access to published research findings. She will be questioned about her about the findings of her group and the working group’s process.

According to the House of Lords, the inquiry will consider: support for universities through funds to cover article processing charges; embargo periods for articles published under open access; engagement with publishers, universities learned societies and other stakeholders in developing the new open access policies; and how the Government should address the concerns raised by the scientific and publishing communities about the recommendations of her group.

The evidence session with Finch will take place at 11:40 GMT on 15 January in Committee Room 4 of the House of Lords.

The committee will hold one further day of evidence sessions in its inquiry into open access on 29 January when it will hear evidence from a number of witnesses including David Willetts MP, minister of state for science universities, and Rick Rylance, chair of Research Councils UK.

The committee has also issued a targeted call for evidence to key stakeholders for this short inquiry. Any party interested in submitting written evidence should contact the clerk to the committee on