Open knowledge at the UOC

What is open access? Which are its benefits? The open access publishing strategies, its legal framework, and much more.

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Why opt for open-access publication of your doctoral thesis?

There are regulations for doctoral studies that require deposit of doctoral theses in electronic format in Spain, Catalonia and at the UOC.

Article 14 of Royal Decree 99/2011 regulating official doctoral studies came into force on 10 February 2012. This article stipulates that “once the doctoral thesis has been approved, the university has to archive it in open electronic format in an institutional repository and send a copy of it and any complementary information necessary, in electronic format, to the Ministry of Education”.

The Ministry of Education database holding the doctoral theses defended in Spain is TESEO.

In turn, the Consell Interuniversitari de Catalunya (Catalan Interuniversity Board, CIC) agreed to carry out a number of activities to promote open access to research in Catalonia. It commissioned the General University Policy Board to introduce and monitor these activities. The Action Plan for Open Access in Catalonia, approved in CIC’s general meeting on 22 June 2009, marks 2012 as a key date when “only those publications held in an open-access repository will be taken into account for research project assessment, faculty accreditation, (six-year period) research assessment or internal promotion”.

Since 2001, the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (Open University of Catalonia, UOC) has participated in the Tesis Doctorals en Xarxa (Doctoral Theses on the Web, TDX) project. TDX’s mission is to provide online open access to the full text of the doctoral theses defended at the pubic universities in Catalonia, disseminating and safeguarding the results of this university research around the world through the MetaArchive Cooperative. This initiative involving leading institutions from around the world has an information exchange network that ensures that other institutions have a copy of the digital content to be preserved. This preservation is carried out using LOCKSS software that constantly compares the different copies so as to provide warnings and automatically restore copies if any changes are made.

Article 10.3 of the Academic Regulations for Doctoral Studies approved by the UOC’s Executive Management Board in November 2011 stipulates that “once the doctoral thesis has been approved, the UOC takes responsibility for ensuring open access to it and for storing it in electronic format in the corresponding institutional repository, and sends an electronic copy of the thesis and complementary information to the competent bodies. In addition, it will undertake the procedures to include the doctoral thesis in the online catalogue of doctoral theses.”

The UOC’s Open-Access Policy was approved by the Governing Council on 6 October 2010. It requires that UOC staff deposit their work in the UOC’s O2 institutional open-access repository. The definitive aim is to bring together all the scientific and teaching work produced within the University and make it accessible to everyone, freely and for free, in order to spread knowledge throughout the scientific community so that society, in general, and science, in particular, can progress.

All theses defended at the UOC have to be archived in its O2 institutional repository and the TDX cooperative thesis repository, and the corresponding data have to be entered on the TESEO database.