Access to information/knowledge: a clinician’s perspective
Sahu, DK (2005) Access to information/knowledge: a clinician’s perspective. In: IJD GoldCon and Cuticon 2005, 26-27 Nov 2005, Kolkata, India.
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Scholarly communication is an integral part of all research activities. “Knowledge creation” is as important as “knowledge dissemination”, especially so in the medical science where a clinician at the remotest area should also be informed of the new advances in the diagnosis or treatment of a disease. Researchers publish their results in the scientific journals to establish their own claim to the research and to enable others to build upon those. The traditional model of scholarly communication, based on print journal publication, has become expensive and restrictive in its ability to make information widely accessible. Only the richest institutions have been able to afford a small proportion of all the scholarly journals published. In facts, the same researcher who has published a paper has to pay to access his paper. Open Access is the worldwide movement to disseminate scientific and scholarly research literature online, free of charge and free of unnecessary licensing restrictions using cost effective alternative to the traditional subscription-based publishing model. Wide circulation adds value to published work; it is a significant aspect of its claim to be knowledge. Open access, can benefit both a researcher-author working in the best equipped laboratory at a leading research university and a clinician struggling to find resources it the real world. Many biomedical journals from India are now available free of cost in electronic form. However, the best science in India is not published in Indian journals. Hence, even if all the journals from India are OA, Indian scientists will not have access to work done by their colleagues unless either the rest of the world also follows full open access publishing or we archive our work in our institutional repositories (Open access archive). There is a need for all scientists to archive their research work electronically long term preservation and wider accessibility.
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