The most cited definition of open access (OA) comes from the Budapest Open Access Initiative:
"By 'open access'..., we mean its free availability on the public Internet, permitting any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles, crawl them for indexing, pass them as data to software, or use them for any other lawful purpose without financial, legal, or technical barriers..."
-The Budapest Open Access Initiative, 2001
The University of St. Thomas libraries is joining hundreds of libraries and universities across the world to promote free, immediate online access to scholarly research.
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Open Access Empowers 16-year-old Jack Andraka to Create Breakthrough Cancer Diagnostic
Jack Andraka is a perfect example of the power of Open Access, the free availability of all academic research articles online with full reuse rights. Only 16 years old, Jack discovered a breakthrough pancreatic cancer diagnostic using carbon nanotubes. Jack went on to win the 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. His story would not be possible without Open Access.
On February 22nd, the Obama Administration made Open Access “a priority at the highest level,” by issuing an Executive Directive expanding the NIH policy to require all federal science agencies to make the articles resulting from the research they fund freely available online within 12 months of publication in a journal. This directive is an important step in the right direction.