Over the last two years or so, our hardworking UKPMC development team here at the British Library have often been asked 'why are you developing a UK PubMed Central?' There are a whole series of answers to this, but I outline two below which are quite wholesomely toothsome.
Firstly, the UK's eight largest funders of biomedical and health research (http://ukpmc.ac.uk/Funders/
) encourage all the recipients of their grants to publish in Open Access journals. This is a good thing - as research essentially stems from the public purse, so it is the public that should benefit from good biomedical, clinical and health advances in science. By offering the research findings back free to other researchers, the chance of research activities being duplicated is in likelihood, reduced. Its probably an argument which you have heard before. But I think it is truly valid.
Secondly, we have developed UKPMC in direct collaboration with the UK's research community. Hours of toil and valid criticism gathered from running workshops, focus groups and face-to-face tests with researchers in research labs has enabled us to develop what we believe are some pretty neat features useful for researchers, which should save time and effort. The latest of these are links to chemical entities, chosen from our suite of available entity types. This means
that if a full-text article you have downloaded refers to certain drugs or metabolytes, you can
quickly access, with confidence, further sources of information which we offer
you from various external databases. Even if you are not a scientist, check out the potential of data and text mining on our site....So, its a bit of a showcase example of how Open Access publishing can be enhanced - it could well inspire you.
As for Open Access week. Don't forget our competition, you can win a $30 gift voucher. More details in a previous blog entry here: http://www.openaccessweek.org/profiles/blog/list?tag=ukpmc