|Academic Press has announced that universities, research centers, and
teaching hospitals located in low-income countries can now gain reduced-rate
access to IDEAL, the online resource library for researchers in science,
technology, and medicine (STM).
The IDEAL Charter for Low-Income Countries, a new licensing model, offers
specially priced access to IDEAL for institutions located in countries
with severely limited resources. As Internet connectivity becomes more
widespread, the availability of IDEAL through this new licensing model
will contribute to the development of many institutions in eligible countries
The IDEAL Charter offers reduced-rate access to nations that conform
to the World Bank's definition of low-income countries—i.e., those with
a gross domestic product (GDP) per capita of U.S. $760 or less. This group
includes sub-Saharan African countries, as well as ones in Central America
and Central and Southeast Asia.
In Paris, at the ICSU-UNESCO Conference on Electronic Publishing in
Science, Academic Press president Pieter Bolman delivered a talk on the
new economics of the electronic publishing of scientific journals. As part
of his talk, Bolman announced the launch of the IDEAL Charter for Low-Income
Bolman said: "Developments in information technology continue to have
a profound effect on production and distribution of scientific, technical,
and medical journals. The transition to electronic publishing of these
journals has actually just begun and, contrary to popular belief, has not
and will not come cheaply. However, while we in publishing continue to
adjust to the ongoing transition period in which STM journals are moving
rapidly online, we want to step forward and assist researchers in countries
less fortunate than ours.
"Thus, I am delighted to announce the creation of the IDEAL Charter,
which will dramatically improve access in low-income countries to our journals.
This initiative strongly carries forward our enduring goal—to take high-quality
research findings to the largest possible audience. The IDEAL Charter will
deliver value far beyond the investment put into it, and though the charter
is but a small step toward eliminating the digital divide, we at Academic
Press and Harcourt are proud of this initiative and invite participation
Einar Eriksen, with the Yekatit 12 Hospital Burn Unit in Ethiopia, said:
"As a plastic surgeon working in the capital city Addis Ababa, I mainly
deal with burn patients and other individuals in need of reconstructive
surgery. Easy access to medical journals through the Internet, as proposed
by the IDEAL Charter, will be of great encouragement, motivation, and benefit
to professionals working in various health institutions in developing countries.
I look forward for this initiative to be realized."
IDEAL offers 176 currently published Academic Press journals, plus Harcourt
Health Sciences (HHS) journals from Churchill Livingstone, W.B. Saunders,
Baillière Tindall, and Mosby. The IDEAL Charter offers full-text
access to all Harcourt Health Sciences and Academic Press journals, as
well as Academic Press archival backfiles dating back to 1993, on IDEAL.
As part of the launching of the IDEAL Charter for Low-Income Countries,
sponsorships are being sought. Though the charter model comprises reduced-rate
fees subsidized by Academic Press and Harcourt, some low-income countries
may need further assistance to enable them to take advantage of the innovative
licensing initiative. Philanthropic organizations and corporations are
encouraged to underwrite charter access to IDEAL for specific countries.
Complete details about the IDEAL Charter are available at http://www.academicpress.com/www/ideal/charter.htm.
IDEAL is licensed in 30 countries by more than 2,000 academic institutions
and industrial and pharmaceutical companies, and is accessible to over
10 million authorized users worldwide.
IDEAL now offers nearly 200,000 journal articles and 14,000 journal
issues. This year, the number of journals on IDEAL is increasing, as more
peer-reviewed medical journals from Harcourt Health Sciences are being
brought online. This expansion will bring the number of HHS journals on
IDEAL to about 140.
Source: Academic Press, San Diego, 619/231-0926; http://www.academicpress.com.