In 2008-09, the University approved an open access plan. We declared that open access is good for us and for society, and that we would participate in it. We set up an institutional repository. We began formal efforts to make BU scholarship as widely available as possible.
In 2009, School of Theology began requiring that graduate theses and dissertations be submitted on paper and electronically. They were then archived in OpenBU, openly by default, but with optional embargoes.
In 2013, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences began requiring electronic-only submission of theses and dissertations. MED and STH have followed. As of January 1, 2015, all BU theses and dissertations will be submitted electronically and, again, archived in OpenBU—openly by default, but with optional embargoes in certain circumstances. For more information on this, please refer to the Guide for Writers of Theses and Dissertations, and to your School or College.
In spring of 2014, the Faculty Council voted on a new, opt-out policy for scholarly articles produced by BU faculty. This policy is now in consideration at the University Council level. If adopted, it will state that the final author drafts of all peer reviewed scholarly articles will be deposited to OpenBU, and that by default they’ll be openly accessible. There will be a way to opt out, on a per-article basis.
The opt-out policy and BU’s decision to go all-electronic and open-access with theses and dissertations attest to BU’s commitment to disseminating the fruits of its research as widely as possible, in order to maximize benefit to society.