Faculty members at Stanford University’s school of education have voted to make scholarly articles available to the public for free, a policy change that the university says makes Stanford’s education school the first such school in the nation to join the growing “open access” movement in academia.
This is a welcome development. Of course, policymakers will continue to need skilled interpreters and brokers to figure out what — especially quantitative — research actually says (and doesn’t say) and how it is relevant to the challenges and contexts in which they work.
What are the financial costs of such a policy? And who bears them? Will other institutions — both public and private — follow in Stanford’s footsteps?