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All should have immediate online access to high-quality peer-reviewed articles as soon as they are published, says the Wellcome Trust, the United Kingdom’s leading biomedical research charity, in a report issued last week.

The report — by economic analysts SQL — says that open-access initiatives such as PubMed Central and some online archives don’t go far enough, either because content lags behind paper journals or access is too selective. The Public Library of Science (PLoS) online journal, however, is a viable solution, says the report.

The trust believes that fast online access to research at the moment of publication could speed up scientific discovery, citing the huge numbers of scientists worldwide who accessed the online results of the human genome project.

Link to full article in British Medical Journal
Link to full Wellcome Trust report: An Economic Analysis of Scientific Research Publishing

Reference: BMJ, 327, 828 (2003)