SPARC and the World Bank Announce Speakers for Open Access Week 2012 Kickoff Webcast “Perspectives on Open Access: Practice, Progress and Pitfalls”

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For Immediate Release
September 24, 2012

For more information, contact:
Andrea Higginbotham
andrea [at] arl [dot] org
(202) 296-2296


Devika Levy
Dlevy [at] worldbank [dot] org

SPARC and the World Bank Announce Speakers for Open Access Week 2012 Kickoff Webcast – “Perspectives on Open Access: Practice, Progress and Pitfalls”

Washington, D.C. – September 24, 2012 - SPARC (The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) and the World Bank are pleased to announce the speakers for their co-sponsored kickoff event for Open Access Week 2012. The event will take place Monday, October 22, 4pm - 5:30pm, at the World Bank in Washington, DC.

The distinguished panel of speakers is comprised of experts from the broad range of stakeholders in the Open Access movement: researchers, students, policy makers, publishers and academics. The following speakers will discuss why Open Access is an imperative to them, and to their work:

• Michael Carroll, Professor of Law, American University and founding Board Member, Creative Commons
• Matt Cooper, President, The National Association of Graduate-Professional Students
• Maricel Kann, Assistant Professor, University of Maryland and member, PubMed Central National Advisory Committee, NIH
• Carlos Rossel, Publisher, The World Bank
• Neil Thakur, Special Assistant to the Deputy Director, Extramural Research, National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The 90-minute panel will be moderated by Heather Joseph, Executive Director, SPARC, with ample time for questions from audience members. Immediately following the question and answer session, SPARC will sponsor a reception for those attending and participating in the panel discussion. Registration is only required for in-person attendance and can be done by emailing Andrea Higginbotham at SPARC by October 18. To view the webcast and participate in the live blog, simply go to the World Bank’s Live portal.

Open Access Week is now in its sixth year, and offers an opportunity for the academic and research community to continue to learn about the potential benefits of Open Access, to share what they’ve learned with colleagues, and to help inspire wider participation in helping to make Open Access a new norm in scholarship and research. Last year’s Open Access Week featured events in more than 130 countries. This year’s theme, “Set the Default to Open Access,” will continue to advance the global conversation, and showcase the many steps taken all over the world towards Open Access initiatives. For information about Open Access week events and information please go to


SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), with SPARC Europe and SPARC Japan, is an international alliance of more than 800 academic and research libraries working to create a more open system of scholarly communication. SPARC’s advocacy, educational, and publisher partnership programs encourage expanded dissemination of research. SPARC is on the Web at

The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. The World Bank was recently named a SPARC Innovator for its implementation of a new open access policy, which included the launch of the World Bank Open Knowledge Repository (OKR). The World Bank opened its data to the public in 2010. For more information on World Bank open development tools and resources, visit