From the SPARC website:
"SPARC®, the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, is an international alliance of academic and research libraries working to correct imbalances in the scholarly publishing system. Developed by the Association of Research Libraries, SPARC has become a catalyst for change. Its pragmatic focus is to stimulate the emergence of new scholarly communication models that expand the dissemination of scholarly research and reduce financial pressures on libraries. Action by SPARC in collaboration with stakeholders – including authors, publishers, and libraries – builds on the unprecedented opportunities created by the networked digital environment to advance the conduct of scholarship"
"Open access (OA) literature is digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions." Peter Suber, Open Access.
"Open Access is the free, immediate, online availability of research articles, coupled with the rights to use these articles fully in the digital environment." Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC).
Open access mandates are policies adopted by research institutions (colleges/universities, funding agencies, government agencies, etc.) that require authors to archive their research output in a repository that is freely accessible. The goal of an open access mandate is to promote free access to quality research to as wide of an audience as possible.
Here are some examples of research institutions and funding agencies with open access mandates:
For a complete list of institutions with open access mandates, click on links below.
This brief video, produced by the Institute on Scholarly Communication in association with SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), explains how researchers can maximize exposure and dissemination for their peer-reviewed article manuscripts.