The research will probably have been publicly funded either through taxpayers’ money or charities and the researchers who wrote the paper don’t make any money from publishing it.
But unless you (or your workplace) pay a large fee, you won’t be able to access the research in full.
It’s a frustrating (and many believe) morally wrong system. And we firmly believe the results of publicly-funded research should be fully and freely available to all - take a look at our open-access publishing policy.
And now research funders are joining together to take a stand. This weekend, reports were circulating in The Guardian, that this could become a reality within 2 years.
What's more, on Friday the European Research Council announced that it is joining UK PubMed Central – an online biomedical research library that is leading the open-access revolution.
UK PubMed Central already has some heavyweight funders involved – including the Wellcome Trust, Medical Research Council, and of course Parkinson’s UK.
But getting the European Research Council on board, which has annual research funding budget of billions, is a major step forward for the open access movement.
Later this year the library will be re-christened ‘Europe PubMed Central’ encouraging other European funders to get involved.
And across the pond over 28,000 people recently signed a petition urging President Obama to make all federally funded research open-access.
But it’s not all about funders. Researchers have a massive part to play in the debate too.
We’ll be talking to UK researchers about open-access publishing at our research conference later this year and we’d like to tell them what you think about open-access publishing – so please tell us in the comments section below!