In the United States, requirements regarding public access to publications and data arising from federally funded research can be stipulated by the executive or legislative branches of the government. For example, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy issued a public access directive in 2013. The Appropriations Act of 2014 requires selected federal agencies to provide public access to the research they fund.
Mandated public access to publications and data
In February 2013, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) issued a Memorandum on Increasing Access to the Results of Federally Funded Scientific Research . The Memorandum, a.k.a. the OSTP Directive, directed federal agencies that fund more than $100 million in research to develop policies requiring public access and re‐use rights to peer‐reviewed publications and digital data arising from that funding. The Directive went into effect immediately. Draft policies must be available for review by September 2013. The effective dates of the policies can be no sooner than the publication date of the agency’s final plan. The Open Data Policy was issued in May 2013.
Also in February 2013, the Fair Use of Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR) was introduced in both the House and the Senate with bipartisan support. FASTR requires federal agencies that fund more than $100 million in research to develop policies mandating public (open) access and re-use rights to peer-reviewed publications arising from that funding. FASTR must be passed into law to take effect.
The University Libraries prepared a table comparing the OSTP Directive and FASTR.
As of January 17, 2014, the United States federal government has a new set of open access mandates adopted as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014. Similar to the NIH public access policy, the Act directs affected agencies to develop public access policies that require:
- Submission to the agency, or a designated entity acting on behalf of the agency, of a machine-readable version of the author's final peer-reviewed manuscript describing research supported by federal funding
- Free online public access to the final peer-reviewed manuscript or published version in a trusted repository no later than 12 months after publication
- Compliance will U.S. copyright law
The agencies affected by the public access provision in the Appropriations Act include:
- Department of Labor
- Department of Education
- Department of Health and Human Services (including the National Institutes of Health, Food and Drug Administration, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
In addition, research universities and other institutions worldwide are increasingly adopting a public access mandate or open access policy. For example, the Microsoft Research Open Access Policy was announced in January 2014. For a fairly comprehensive list of institutional mandates, see the Registry of Open Access Repositories Mandatory Archiving Policies (ROARMAP).