Wed, Feb 08, 2017

Avoiding an EU own goal on digital access to knowledge

The EU should listen to the innovators, knowledge creators and developers when it comes to data mining: the potential benefits are too great to be ignored, writes Helen Frew.

Helen Frew is advocacy officer at LIBER, the Association of European Research Libraries.

Two years ago, 25 people sat down together in a room and wrote the Hague Declaration. They were specialists from differing backgrounds (researchers, publishers, lawyers, lecturers) but they had an understanding and recognition that there needed to be action to safeguard knowledge in the digital age. Not just through preservation but better access and exploration. They advocated for the responsible use of big data to improve and innovate, for the economy and society.

Two years on and the issue of accessing and analysing data through computerised mechanisms is now at the forefront of EU legislative policy. EU institutions are at the point of making a decision that could have an incredibly significant and positive effect on research and innovation – namely to facilitate text and data mining (TDM) of digital information.

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