[open-science] Open science from public funding

Peter Murray-Rust pm286 at cam.ac.uk
Tue Mar 17 10:59:54 UTC 2009

Sometimes I look longingly at HEP as a domain where Openness is endemic.

There are very good reasons why data is not open in chemistry.

There is a large chemical information market where information is collected
and sold back t the community. Organizations like Chemical Abstracts have a
turnover of somewhere like 500-1000 million USD. The chief officers of the
American Chemical Society have to be rewarded at competitive industrial
rates - some of them get nearly 2M USD yr-1.

If data were open their business model would need to be refactored. So the
ACS (and Wiley) copyright supplemental data and forbid the downloading of
their data for research. If I publish data I have to hand over the ownership
to these publishers.

In this argument "good" = "compelling in a business sense" - not "morally


2009/3/17 Sabine Kurjo McNeill <sabine at 3dmetrics.co.uk>

>  In support of Tim’s and Jean-Claude’s remarks, shouldn’t it be obvious to
> any scientist that publicly funded work has to be in the public domain?
> Public funding vs private profit is after all the big distinction between
> the state and industry. On what grounds should any data not be open?
> Sabine [formerly software analyst at CERN]

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Peter Murray-Rust
Reader in Molecular Informatics
Unilever Centre, Dep. Of Chemistry
University of Cambridge
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