Heartfelt Congratulations to CSU East Bay for Passing the First Green OA Policy in the CSU

Heard today from my ScholComm colleague Lana Wood that the President at CSU East Bay today signed the Green Open Access Policy passed for the second year in a row by their Academic Senate. Congrats to Lana, her policy co-champion (Vanessa Yingling from Kinesiology), the CSUEB Committee on Research, the CSUEB Academic Senate, and the CSUEB President on being on the first CSU to achieve this honor. CSUEB joins the hallowed ranks of the UCs, Harvard, MIT, Caltech, Stanford, and lots of R1, R2, M1, M2, and Liberal Arts institutions that have passed such policies!

This is not only a tremendous honor for Lana and CSUEB, but also a significant milestone in the Open Access movement and achievement in the scientific community and for the public good. Like comparable Green OA opt-out policies at other universities, this one retains faculty copyright over articles and secures default open access licenses that benefit students, the general public, and institutional web/repository usage. It’s a win-win-win for everyone except publisher monopolies. And it finally got done at the nation’s largest public university system!

At this summer’s CSU Digital Repositories meeting, Lana will present on her successful efforts and advise librarians and teaching faculty about how our 22 other CSU campuses can pass virtually identical policies, giving similar benefits and simplifying the administration and implementation of these policies in our shared ScholarWorks repository.

Our efforts at Fullerton over the past five years led to a virtually identical policy being passed out of committee four times, but unwritten legal concerns were cited across three consecutive years to prevent it from getting out of Executive committee and getting a vote in plenary Senate. It’s been a frustrating slog, especially since this obstructive and/or apathetic pattern continued even after CSU Statewide Senate unanimously passed AS-3376/19-FA, calling for a systemwide CSU Green OA policy and accompanied by letters of support from attorneys and copyright experts at Harvard, the UC, and KU.

Here’s hoping that CSU administrators have finally reached a tipping point and are poised to shift from recalcitrance to support and even leadership in the Open Access movement, following the example of leaders like former UC President Janet Napolitano. Our students and the general public deserve that. The future and the world aren’t waiting for you anymore.