11 March 2008

Wall Street Journal favours Open Access

Wow! What a headline (mine - not that of the WSJ). In fact the import of Daniel Akst's article, Information liberation is even more surprising. The WSJ is a bastion of conservatism in the USA and yet they publish this piece, which, in the context of the actions of NIH and Harvard University, notes:
Other than in the realm of life-saving medicine, why should any of this matter to nonacademics? Well, for one thing, barriers to the spread of information are bad for capitalism. The dissemination of knowledge is almost as crucial as the production of it for the creation of wealth, and knowledge (like people) can't reproduce in isolation. It's easy to scoff at the rise of Madonna studies and other risible academic excrescences, but a flood of truly important research pours from campuses every day. The infrastructure that produces this work is surely one of America's greatest competitive advantages.

So there are limits to capitalism after all! That must be a shock to corporate America - or perhaps the problem is that some of the major players are European?

No comments:

Post a Comment