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One of the immediate benefits of making your work open is that current and future scholars doing work in similar areas can discover your research immediately. Traditional scholarly publishers limit access by charging individuals and institutions subscription fees to access scholarship and research. Those works cannot be widely accessed by everyone that might stand to gain from the work, cite the work, or build upon it.
The more users who can access a work, the more researchers that can cite that work. Open Access articles receive 18% more citations than paywalled articles, according to a recent study in PeerJ.
By making their work globally visible through open access, authors are allowing more scholars, more promising students and future scholars, less wealthy institutions, policy makers, news reporters, and the unexpected reader and citizen scholar to have access to their work who may not have otherwise had the ability or funds to access closed-access scholarship. At Purdue we measure downloads and global access of items available at Purdue through our open access repository, Purdue e-Pubs.
One of the main objectives of land grant schools is to provide broad access to education and knowledge beyond the academy. Open access at Purdue can publicly showcase the scholarly output of the University and its community members, this provides greater visibility and traffic to your department, school, and ultimately the university. It can also show that scholars and researchers at Purdue think beyond their own disciplines by showcasing the interdisciplinary scholarship and research being created at Purdue. Finally, open access scholarship demonstrates accountability to the public that funds the university, while disseminating knowledge gained and created at Purdue; satisfying the public mission of the university.