When submitting an article to a journal, authors often automatically transfer many rights to a publisher, making it more difficult to publish an article in open access by the green route at a later stage. To tackle this problem, Radboud University and Windesheim carried out a pilot, in which a number of prominent academics were asked to add the Radboud Addendum to the publisher’s contract, with the request for the publisher to return a signed version of it. In addition, the Taverne amendment entered into force on 1 July 2015. Academic articles for which the research was fully or partially funded by the government may be placed in open access by the author after a reasonable time period. However, agreement must be reached on what constitutes a “reasonable time period”.
Testing an addendum that may be added to a contract/agreement with a publisher by academic researchers, allowing articles to be made available for open access publication in institutional repositories within a reasonable time period. If this doesn’t prove viable, studying alternative methods to allow Dutch institutions to properly implement the Taverne Amendment in practice.
In personal interviews prominent academics were asked to add the addendum when closing a contract/agreement with a publisher. However, academic researchers have reservations about this test. They highlight the risk for young authors, whose careers depend on as many publications as possible in high impact journals. In addition, academics are reluctant to have to convince co-authors (national and international), and most do not consider it to be the task of individual academics to make these kinds of agreements with a publisher. In addition, it is often not possible to add a digital addendum when concluding an agreement. There are therefore objections to this green route and as a result the citation indexing cannot be used optimally. In Windesheim the activities were not started as there was a need to focus first on disseminating information on open access publication before the Addendum could be brought to attention.
Due to these barriers in using an amendment, it was decided to try for a national approach.