The European Commission today launched Open Research Europe, a freely accessible platform for publishing scientific papers. The platform will present the results of research funded by Horizon Europe, the EU’s research and innovation programme for 2021-2027, and its predecessor, Horizon 2020.
Open Research Europe will provide free access to the latest scientific findings for researchers and the general public alike. This directly addresses the major difficulties often associated with the publication of scientific results, such as delays and barriers to re-use of results and high costs. The platform is an optional service for Horizon Europe and Horizon 2020 beneficiaries to meet the requirement to immediately provide open access to their research at no cost to them.
Approximately 40 scientific papers from a wide range of research fields have already been submitted and are available for the scientific community to read and review.
We need to accelerate scientific discovery through more open and collaborative research practices. By helping researchers to publish openly, Open Research Europe removes barriers to knowledge flows and fuels scientific debate. And this is just the beginning. We will build on the platform’s reputation as the publishing space of choice for Horizon 2020 and Horizon Europe researchers, and ensure that it is fully integrated into the European Research Area,” said Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth.
Supporting open science and transparency in the process of scientific publication
In the Communication “A new ERA for research and innovation”, the Commission presents Open Research Europe as an open access publication platform to disseminate research arising from Horizon 2020 and Horizon Europe funding in all thematic areas of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, as well as social sciences, arts and humanities.
Open Research Europe will not only contribute to the open, fast and cost-effective publication of scientific research. It will also make it easier for Horizon 2020 and Horizon Europe beneficiaries to meet the open access requirements linked to their funding: immediate open access, as required by Horizon Europe, and automatic submission to a general-purpose repository (whereas Horizon 2020 allowed documents to be retained for 6-12 months). Open Research Europe will provide researchers with a publishing space where they can quickly share their results and knowledge, and facilitate open and constructive research discussions. The platform has a wide range of metrics to measure the scientific and societal impact of articles and provide information on their use and re-use.
In taking on this new role, the Commission intends to lead by example by actively supporting open science practices and promoting transparency in the publication process. It aims to inspire other sponsors, in particular at national level, to do the same. By integrating Open Research Europe into Horizon 2020 and Horizon Europe, the Commission is taking scholarly communication to a new level of innovative solutions.
Currently, 91% of publications and 95% of peer-reviewed publications funded by Horizon 2020 are open access, which is extremely high by global standards. However, the aim is to make all academic publications resulting from Commission-funded research open access. In particular, Horizon Europe aims to make publications open access as soon as they are published, which the platform makes possible.
Open science is an approach whereby the research process is based on open collaborative work and the systematic sharing of knowledge and tools as quickly and widely as possible. This approach makes research and innovation systems more efficient and creative, and strengthens excellence and society’s trust in science. This is because the openness and sharing of research results and data – allowing reuse and replication of such information – and access to research infrastructures provide the basis for peer review and scholarly debate, which in turn ensures quality and efficiency in driving research thinking, analysis and innovation.
The EU response to the coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the potential of open science to foster collaboration, and illustrates how immediate open access to publications and data is crucial to help researchers discover new treatments, diagnostics and vaccines. Open Research Europe is the next step in this process.