Social responsibility – Science as public property
As a publicly funded organization, Fraunhofer has a duty to facilitate the free and immediate access to its research findings (including the data on which these findings are based), and in this way inform the general public about the results of its research activities. For this reason, wherever possible, all Fraunhofer research papers shall be published via the gold or green road of Open Access.
Creating value through knowledge transfer
The publication of research papers is an important element in Fraunhofer’s strategy for transferring knowledge and technology to society at large and to potential customers and collaborating partners. The best possible access must be provided to the results of research performed at Fraunhofer, so that they are immediately available for re-use in follow-up research projects. Another advantage of Open Access publishing is that it permits the use of innovative methods of analysis or evaluation. The sharing of scientific knowledge through cross-linked, digital resources enables the development of new research approaches and innovations, and promotes faster and more immediate communication and exchange of experience within the scientific community.
Reproducibility is one of the fundamental principles of scientific practice, because it ensures that experimental results can be duplicated and verified. Open Access to published papers promotes transparency in research and enables research results to be verified more quickly and easily, especially if the underlying data is also made available at the same time.
Open Access publishing enables information to be spread more promptly and efficiently to all interested parties in the research market. By providing timely access to scientific papers, new findings can be disseminated more rapidly, leading to shorter innovation cycles. Another advantage of Fraunhofer’s Open Access strategy is that the publication of scientific work and research findings on an open platform enables the organization’s industrial and business partners to easily identify the most suitable partners for their future research projects.
As part of our Open Access activities, we are in the process of developing cost-transparent models in collaboration with the relevant scientific publishing houses.
Fraunhofer’s strategy is aligned with the Open Access policies promulgated by the EU and by the German national and regional governments, and complies with the recommendations of the German and European research funding agencies. On a national and European level, Open Access publishing is seen as a topic of public interest, and hence the Fraunhofer Open Access Strategy will help to bring about a cultural change in the scientific practice and conduct of the scientific community.