Launch of the FOSTER Project: Facilitate Open Science Training for European Research

Helping researchers comply with Horizon 2020 and ERA Open Access requirements

General Public

Project: FOSTER. Objective: Facilitate Open Science Training for European Research. The FOSTER project, launched on February 1st, will provide training materials to help institutions and researchers comply with Open Access policies and integrate it into their research workflow.

Open access of the people, by the people, for the people
(CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 Will Foster / Flickr)

In the next few years, Europe might reach a point where nearly 100% of scientific publications will be in open access. Hurrah!! Pro-OA activists have been relentlessly advocating for 10 years now. This recently led to a clearing of the sky when states, such as the UK and Germany, started taking clear positions in favor of Open Access. The European policies were backed by the European Commission, stating that all projects financed by Horizon 2020 and ERA programs would be in Open Access.

Today, promotion becomes action, and researchers have to pick up the torch. But how to help them in this task?

Well, that’s the objective of a project rightly called Facilitating Open Science Training for European Research (FOSTER). FOSTER is a FP7 project coordinated by Eloy Rodrigues, Head of the University of Minho’s library. Starting in February 2014, this project will collect material and provide training programs on Open Access and Open Data for researchers, librarians, project managers and stakeholders. Three steps have been singled out:

- identify content for open science training;

- allow distance training through the FOSTER portal, and

- join open access training actions to existing science conferences.


13 partners from 8 countries are participating in FOSTER. The project aims not only to facilitate Open Access but also to promote Open Science in general.

The website explains that “FOSTER is a coordination initiative that aims to support the full range of stakeholders in the research lifecycle, but especially young researchers, in adopting Open Science principles (Open Access, Open Data, Open Note Book, Open Educational Resources, Social Media for dissemination of research results) in the context of the European Research Area (ERA) and in complying with the open access policies and rules of participation set out for Horizon 2020 (H2020).”

The pre-website of the project was released last week: It is already calling for scientific communities and organizations willing to host Open Access FOSTER training action. Later this month, a call to collect content about Open Access, Open Science and Open Data will be released. The call for training event will then be reconduct in October 2014 for events occuring in 2015.

FOSTER aims to integrate Open Science practices into the current research process by targeting young researchers and stakeholders. But better than reinventing the wheel, FOSTER will rely on existing training material and conferences and on the Open Access community. So be ready for it! Starting this month you can begin submitting conferences and, soon, your OA content, in order to take part in the training of a new generation of Open Researchers.



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