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Baptiste Auguie
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France prefers to pay twice for its researchers' work

Instead of giving everyone access to the work of its scientists - work it has financed - France prefers to pay 172 million euros to a Dutch publisher.

That's a headline in the newspaper Rue89.  In their latest round of negotiaitons, after threatening to quit taking Elsevier journals, the French Ministry of Research caved in and agreed on a secret contract with this publisher.  But now Rue89 has published a copy of this contract!   Here it is in French:

http://rue89.nouvelobs.com/sites/news/files/assets/document/2014/11/marche_elsevier.pdf

Here it is in English:

http://tinyurl.com/qjps3mv

The whole article is below, or here in English:

http://tinyurl.com/qfxtwz2

These English translations are pretty crude, made by Google Translate.  The French mathematician Marie Farge, director of the science institute CNRS, writes:

It would be nice to have an English translation of both the paper and the contract. Could you please forward this news since the paper and the contract might not be accessible for long time?

This will certainly bring more transparency into the system and hopefully more consciousness among our colleagues. I am looking for lively discussions, thanks to this courageous paper. All the best!

Compare the situation in the Netherlands:

Negotiations between the Dutch universities and publishing company Elsevier on subscription fees and Open Access have ground to a halt. In line with the policy pursued by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, the universities want academic publications to be freely accessible. To that end, agreements will have to be made with the publishers. The proposal presented by Elsevier last week totally fails to address this inevitable change. The universities hope that Elsevier will submit an amended proposal. ‘From now on we will inform our researchers about the consequences of this deadlock’, says Gerard Meijer, president of Radboud University Nijmegen and chief negotiator on behalf of the VSNU.

This is a quote from here:

http://vsnu.nl/news/newsitem/11-negotiations-between-elsevier-and-universities-failed.html
Au lieu de donner à tous l'accès aux travaux de ses scientifiques -- qu'elle a financés --, la France choisit de verser 172 millions d’euros à un éditeur néerlandais. Rue89 dévoile le texte de cet incroyable marché.
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