Open Access: Yes we can and yes we should! It’s essential to profile our research and boost the reputation of our researchers.
Bouke Oudega
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam


New Open Access initiative from NWO

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NWOFrom 2011, scientific conferences which devote attention to open access can count on a financial contribution from NWO of up to 2500 euro. The funding is for sessions which draw attention to the importance of publishing in publications that are accessible to all. The benefit of these sessions is that the importance of open access is brought directly to the attention of the target group (the researchers).

NWO is making 100,000 euro available fore this initiative. Jos Engelen, chairman of NWO, believes it as vital to provide funds for this purpose. In his view, attention to this topic should be generated by researchers themselves. ‘So far it has been mainly publishers, libraries, et cetera who have been talking about this. Of course researchers mainly want to focus on their actual work: doing research. They are not so concerned with new or different ways of publishing. That is why we have created this grant. To make it easier for them to find out about it, to exchange ideas, argue in favour of it and take part themselves.’

The NWO grant is available for conferences with a minimum of one hundred participants. In addition, the organising committee must include one or more researchers working in the Netherlands. The open access session should last for at least one hour and be included in the final conference programme. The organising committee decides whether the money is used for a speaker’s travel expenses, a debate leader or facilities for a session. Further details and application conditions will follow in the programme brochure that is currently being written.

NWO has been funding open access publications by researchers since 1 March 2010. A sum of 5000 euro is available for each NWO project. Further information is available at

Read also about this new initiative on the NWO website and Science Guide.