Confusion about copyright and publisher policy among researchers can often be an obstacle to effectively sharing their research. The complexity of conditions and restrictions imposed by publishers means that researchers must now be aware of the minute details of copyright transfer agreements—legal documents that transfer copyright for their published research to the publisher.

For example, they will need to know which version of the published paper may be self-archived and where, how the publisher should be acknowledged in any reproduction, the conditions under which it may be made available to students, and what methods for the sharing of published materials with colleagues are permissible.

Moreover, the introduction of open access mandates by funding agencies has compounded the difficulties in navigating these complexities.

Luckily, expert help is at hand!

“My job is to reduce the friction between researchers at the lab and the various requirements they need to comply with,” explains Geoff Hamm, Scientific Publications Coordinator for Berkeley Lab, “and I’m available to answer any queries researchers may have on copyright issues when working with publishers or the Department of Energy’s policy on open access.”

Geoff can be contacted on

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