Today the American Historical Association posted a statement on embargoing completed dissertations that was drafted by the AHA Council and approved on July 19.
This statement cites no concrete evidence for its conclusions and flies in the face of what many of us who are involved in the mission to transform scholarly publishing see happening in the field. The statement has definitely made me question the direction of the AHA, its ability to represent historians, and its commitment to my students.
I have about seven thousand things to do right now, but there is a timely article coming out in the July issue of College and Research Libraries that directly undercuts this line of argument and thinking. Since the article is CC-BY-NC, I’m reposting it here so you can read it:
Marisa L. Ramirez, Joan T. Dalton, Gail McMillan, Max Read and Nancy H. Seamans, Do Open Access Electronic Theses and Dissertations Diminish Publishing Opportunities in the Social Sciences and Humanities? Findings from a 2011 Survey of Academic Publishers College & Research Libraries vol. 74 no. 4, 368-380.