Open Access to Electronic Theses and Dissertations
The paper argues for mandating open access (OA) to electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs). ETDs are the most invisible form of useful literature and the most useful form of invisible literature. ETDs should be considered low-hanging fruit for the OA movement, along with journal articles. Their authors are not paid to write them, and can consent to OA without losing revenue. Fears that OA for ETDs will prevent future publication are understandable but groundless. There are easy work-arounds for ETDs describing patentable discoveries or containing chapters for which copyright has already been transferred to publishers. An OA requirement will even elicit better work.
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