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AAP Tries to Keep Government Out of Science Publishing

By Rachel Deahl -- Publishers Weekly, 8/23/2007 8:06:00 AM

To blunt the growing movement trying to force not-for-profit and commercial publishers to turn over published articles to the federal government for free online access, the AAP has launched a coalition called the Partnership for Research Integrity in Science and Medicine (PRISM). The coalition has established a Web site at www.prismcoalition.org, where it outlines its “PRISM Principles.” It is hoped, said AAP CEO and president Patricia Schroeder, the information will educate government officials as well as the public about “the very real threat to peer review that ill-considered government interference represents.”

PRISM members are concerned that if government becomes involved in the publication of scientific and scholarly work, changing the standard peer review process that has long been in place, the work could lose its integrity. As Dr. Brian Crawford, chairman of the AAP’s Professional & Scholarly Publishing Division explained, changing the peer review process could ultimately open the gates for “agenda-driven research and bad science.”

Free published articles online would undermine the peer review system, according to the Prism Web site, “by compromising the viability of non-profit and commercial journals that manage and fund it.”

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