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Dr Paul Ayris responds to the UNESCO Open Science Recommendation

25 January 2022

Frontiers Policy Labs asked 11 leading experts in Open Science to give their assessment of the UNESCO Recommendation on Open Science.

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In November 2021 the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) adopted a recommendation on open science.

It calls on member states to do three things:

  • to establish regional and international funding mechanisms for open science;
  • to ensure that all publicly funded research respects the principles and core values of open science, and;
  • to invest in the infrastructure necessary to support open science.

It sets the first international open-science framework following a lot of work from organisations around the world including UCL.

UCL are champions of Open Science. We recognise that it is a vital tool in our ability to respond rapidly and effectively to the major challenges facing society such as the climate crisis and pandemics. We released a public statement in 2021, stating Covid-19 “is a wakeup call to the global research community to finally adopt open science/open scholarship as a set of principles and values which should guide all future activity”.

Dr Paul Ayris, Pro-Vice-Provost LCCOS (UCL Library, Culture, Collections, Open Science) and Kurt Deketelaere Secretary-General LERU and Professor of Law KU Leuven were asked for their joint response to the UNESCO Recommendation. They said:

"The UNESCO Recommendation on Open Science presents an opportunity for a global move towards embracing open science principles and practice. For that reason alone, its appearance at the end of 2021 is to be welcomed. […] 
The UNESCO paper identifies 7 key areas for future action and proposes a monitoring scheme to measure progress. This is to be welcomed, but is it enough to deliver the wholesale cultural change that Open Science requires? Only time will tell.”

Read more

Read more on the Frontiers Policy Labs website.