Open Access is free, fast and universal online access for all users to digital scientific and educational resources available through the Internet.
Publications in Open Access can be freely used – read, copied, printed – for research and teaching purposes.
Open Access Movement is a social initiative to bring together researchers and librarians working for free access to digital publications via the Internet. It started in the ‘90s of the XX century, when the first open scientific repository of physics was created.
Open learning is closely associated with the new models of scholarly communication, such as open journals (gold road), open repositories (green road), open educational resources, open research outputs, science blogs, and free software.
The factors that influenced the development of Open Access are: evolution of the Internet, high prices of journals and databases, commercial publishers’ policy limiting the rights of authors to their work. The social factors were also important - taxpayers paid for both research and access.
The Movement is supported by the European Union, through recommendations and programs that finance scientific research whose outcomes are to be published in open journals and repositories. Many governments from all over the world are promoting Open Access because it increases return on investments in research and ensures that taxpayers have access to the outcomes of research that has been subsidised public funds.
Polish scientists can freely publish their articles in the Springer journals - Ministry of Science and Higher Education has signed the agreement and financed the national licence. More information about the programme here:
Open Access