Open Access: relevance to national agricultural research system
Gutam, Sridhar; Chandrasekharan, H. and Devakumar, C. (2009) Open Access: relevance to national agricultural research system. Agribioinformatics, 2 (1). ISSN 0974-4371
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The agricultural research in India is supported by government under the National Agricultural Research System (NARS), which includes the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) institutes, the State Agricultural Universities (SAUs), and various other government and higher education agencies. The agricultural R&D generates lots of agricultural research data, which is distributed by the scholars to the world by publishing in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, in order to establish their own claim and for peer recognition. This data is assimilated and interpreted for moving on to new research to generate new knowledge and new data. Thus this is a cyclic process, which is facilitated by peer-reviewed journals published by various scholarly societies in the NARS system. There are more than 100 scholarly journals, which are being published by various scientific societies formed to promote and advance the interest of their academic disciplines. However, these societies publish their journals as traditional print only journals so they are apparently less visible to the world. Now with the latest web 2.0 technologies, there is a possibility for the world-wide electronic distribution of the peer-reviewed journal literature via Internet completely free and with unrestricted access so that all the scientists, scholars, teachers, students, and other curious minds could be benefited. Removing the access barriers to this scholarly literature can accelerate research, which would throw light to enrich the education. However, for various reasons, there are limitations for online, free and unrestricted availability. Therefore, professional societies should react quickly, embrace the open source technologies and Internet as much as possible and remove all the restrictions and barriers for the wide distribution of the journals online thereby making possible the peer-reviewed literature immediately accessible, searchable, and reusable to anyone in the world which is called ‘Open Access’ (OA).
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