NEWS21 October 2020

Surrey’s open research position statement promises to lift barriers to accessing knowledge

The University of Surrey has published its open research position statement, publicly declaring its aims of providing free and open access to its research findings and lifting barriers to knowledge.

The statement sets out the foundations for the policy and practice of open research, reaching beyond free access to publications to include transparency throughout the research lifecycle.

Depending on the research discipline and subject to commercial sensitivities, Surrey intends to adopt practices such as pre-registering research designs, sharing articles before peer review (‘pre-prints’), and sharing software, code and artefacts as open source.

The University of Surrey was among the first in the UK to adopt a formal open access policy in 2005 and has since broadened the scope of openness through its research data services, support of open licensing, responsible metrics and reproducibility initiatives.

Professor David Sampson, Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Research & Innovation, commented: “The University of Surrey’s open research position statement embraces the values of our Research and Innovation Strategy and paves the way for further initiatives that will support the diverse and innovative research culture of the University. I strongly welcome this statement, particularly at a time when transparency and open collaboration are more important than ever”.

Professor Emily Farran, Academic Lead for Research Culture and Integrity at the University of Surrey, said: “An open, transparent and collaborative research culture is crucial now more than ever as communities close to home and across the planet are dealing with complex and grand challenges. Our statement clearly articulates both what our partners in Guildford and beyond can expect from our research and the rich research culture that our colleagues and collaborators can expect to join.

“At a national level, this is part of a coordinated effort across the UK Reproducibility Network member Universities to release similar statements, and thus represents part of a national approach to creating a research environment in which research quality is incentivised and enhanced.”