Serbia

Serbia

National Open Access Desk

Contacts
  • Biljana Kosanovic |
    • Serbian research community has been aware of Open Access and its benefits, for more than a decade, since the first conference “Open Access to the Archives of Scientific and Professional Papers: "From Idea to Realization” took place in Belgrade 2003. The largest number of initiatives came from the librarian community, and the majority of projects in OA have been supported by EIFL-OA programme, TEMPUS/Erasmus+, and EC through FP7 and H2020 programme.

      Serbian output 2016:

         

      Total

       

      OA - free to read

      PhD Theses   1300   1300
      Articles in Serbian journals   7189   5000
      Chapter in Serbian monographs/proceedings   1530   1530
      Serbian monographs   317   317
      International monographs   72    
      Chapter in international monographs/proceedings   1523    
      Patents and technical outputs   373    
      International articles WoS   2467    
      International articles WoS - OA   1401   1401

      TOTAL

       

      16172

       

      9548

       

      Support and landscape

      • In 2017, the Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia recorded that there was a total of 22,782 employees in the field of research and development, which is 3.2 employees per thousand inhabitants. In recent years, the Republic of Serbia has improved its scientific research potential, which is illustrated by the fact that Serbia’s output accounts for 0.3% of the total world production of scientific works and the country is ranked 46th on the list of over 140 countries (SCImago Journal&Country Ranк), whereas the University of Belgrade is ranked on the “Shanghai List” 2016, of the world’s best universities between positions 200 and 300.

        Two parallel bodies are responsible for R&D:

        R&D organisations within the public sector are: Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts with its 8 scientific institutes; 28 other scientific institutes; a center of scientific excellence; 30 research institutes and 65 innovation organizations. Eight public universities, comprising 89 faculties, and 8 private universities, including 60 private faculties in Serbia, were granted accreditation by the Ministry for school year 2012/2013.

        In the last ten years, Serbian researchers have achieved encouraging initial results in the domain of international scientific and technological cooperation. Te programmes in which they have been involved include the FP7 and H2020 projects, as well as COST, EUREKA, NATO Science for Peace and Security. Researches from Serbia also cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and take part in bilateral cooperation programmes. In addition to these cooperation programmes, Serbia has actively participated in European and international scientific organisations such as CERN.

        As part of the reforms, Serbia’s parliament passed legislation on 7 December, 2018 to set up a national science fund that will oversee the awarding of much-needed national research grants. The science ministry has until now been in charge of grants, but made its last call for proposals in 2010.

        Events:

        2018 Focus on Open Science: Open Science and the Management of A Cultural Change
          National Open Science Days
          PSSOH (Application of Free Software and Open Hardware) Conference
        2017 Supporting Open Access journal editors and publishers in Serbia
        2016 Open Science in Horizon 2020: Serbia OpenAIRE National Workshop

      National initiatives

      • NaRDUS (nardus.mpn.gov.rs)

        The Law on Higher Education (Amendments as of 2014) stipulates the establishment of a central national digital repository of PhD theses defended at all universities in Serbia – both public and private, accompanied with thesis evaluation reports. The NARDUS database was launched late in 2015. It is managed by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development.

    • OpenAIRE statistics

      13,815 OA publications in 138 repositories
    • National policy

       Serbia has adopted a national Open Science (OS) policy on July 14, 2018. The document is entitled ‘Open Science Platform’ (English translation).

      A working group was established by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development (MESTD) with the task of preparing a funder Open Science policy. As the Ministry is the main funder of research in Serbia, such a policy would also serve as a national OS policy.

      The main elements of the policy are:

      • Open Access is mandatory for all publications resulting from research funded by the MESTD, including journal articles, monographs, book chapters, conference objects, PhD theses (already mandated since 2014).
      • The policy is a ‘Green’ OA mandate (repositories) – publishing in a journal of choice and depositing an author’s copy in an OA repository;
      • The allowed embargo periods are 12 months after the date of publication in case of physical and medical sciences, and engineering, or no later than 18 months in case of social sciences and humanities;
      • The MESTD will recognize Article Processing Charges (APCs) and Book Processing Charges (BPCs) foreseen in the project budget as eligible costs;
      • OA for data is not mandated but it is recommended; the Platform specifies situations where data should not be shared.

      The funder policy is intended to serve as an umbrella document. It sets merely the basic requirements, including the technical requirements for repositories. All other details (depositing procedures, responsibilities for training, administration, monitoring the efficiency of OA policies, etc.) will be addressed in Institutional policies.

      Universities and research institutes shall define and adopt their open science platforms within six months, in accordance with this Platform. Progress and compliance will be monitored by the Ministry.

      On December 3, 2018, the public discussion on the Draft Law on Science and Research has been opened. Open Science is addressed in several articles of the Draft Law.

       

      Institutional policy

      List of institutions

       

       Institution Date   Link Link 
      Institute of Technical Sciences of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts (ITS SASA) September, 2018 in Serbian  
      University of Kragujevac December, 2018 in Serbian  
      Institute for Plant Protection and Environment December, 2018 in Serbian  
      University of Criminal Investigation and Police Studies January, 2019 in Serbian  
      University of Pristina, Kosovska Mitrovica March, 2019 in Serbian  
       University of Belgrade March, 2019 in Serbian  in English 
             
             
             

      The first institution to adopt an institutional open science policy in Serbia was the Institute of Technical Sciences of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts (ITS SASA). Late in September 2018, the document Rules of Procedure on the Implementation of the MESTD Open Science Platform was officially adopted and published on the institute’s website (in Serbian). Is accompanied with an annex explaining the key concepts and procedures. The institutional policy mandates deposits for all research outputs (and not only those funded by the MESTD) of the researchers employed at the institute. In case a publication is not open access, researchers are required to deposit a peer-reviewed manuscript which will be made open access after an embargo period.

      The University of Belgrade appointed a working group tasked with drafting an umbrella university policy that would define the framework for individual institutional policies at the faculties and research institutes under the auspices of the University of Belgrade. It is reasonable to expect that at least three institutes (Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory, Vinča Institute of Nuclear Science and the Siniša Stanković Institute for Biological Research) and one faculty (Faculty of Chemistry) of the University of Belgrade, which have fully operational institutional repositories, will adopt institutional OA policies as soon as the umbrella policy is in place. The future open science policy of the University of Belgrade will certainly provide a model for other universities in Serbia.

      A major obstacle in the process of devising institutional policies is certainly an underdeveloped repository network in Serbia. The majority of institutions would prefer to establish an institutional repository before adopting a policy and it may take some time before they decide on the most appropriate software platform and allocate funding and human resources for this purpose. Nevertheless, lively activities have been taking place in this area over the past several months (2019).

      More about institutional policies is available at http://www.eifl.net/blogs/open-science-move-serbia

      More results in establishing institutional policies are expected during the Erasmus+ project Be-OPEN Boosting Engagement of Serbian Universities in Open Science (leading by the University of Novi Sad, started on October 1, 2016). The Project objective is: (1) to advance national and institutional guidelines, policies, and incentives related to the open science, and (2) to build institutional and individual capacities in order to ensure the sustainable implementation of open science principles and enhance the social inclusiveness and accountability of publicly-funded research.

      Five institutions signed Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities:

      • University of Belgrade (on November 11, 2011),
      • University of Niš (on February 12, 2012)
      • Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts (on September 20, 2013)
      • University of Novi Sad (on February 14, 2017)
      • University of Kragujevac (on October 05, 2017)
       

      Funder policy

      In July 2018, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of the Republic of Serbia (MESTD) adopted the document is entitled ‘Open Science Platform’ (English translation).

      As the MESTD is the main national research funder and the Open Science Platform will actually serve as the national open science policy. The Platform mandates deposits in open access repositories and recommends open access to research data. Research institutions are expected to adopt institutional Open Science policies within six months using the national Platform as a framework. In this context, with a national policy in place, the main purpose of institutional policies is to ensure its implementation at the institutional level.

    • Key networks and aggregators

      • Repositories which: (1) provides open access to the publications, as well as to other outputs of the research projects implemented in the institution; (2) Creative Commons licenses implementation; and (3) OpenAIRE 3.0 (OA, funding) compliant, are:

        1. CHERRY, ie CHEmistRy RepositorY (http://cherry.chem.bg.ac.rs/) - Faculty of Chemistry, University of Belgrade
        2. VinaR, ie Vinca Repository (http://vinar.vin.bg.ac.rs/)  - Vinča Institute of Nuclear Sciences, University of Belgrade
        3. RaDAR, ie Repozitorijum Arhiviranih DigitAlnih Radova (http://ibiss-r.rcub.bg.ac.rs/) - Siniša Stanković Institute of Biological Research, University of Belgrade
        4. DAIS, ie Digital ArchIve of SASA (dais.sanu.ac.rs) - joint repository of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts and institutes under its auspices
        5. RAUmPlan ie. Repozitorijum Arhitekture Urbanizma i Planiranja (http://raumplan.iaus.ac.rs/) - Institute of Architecture and Urban & Spatial Planning of Serbia, Belgrade
        6. RIStocar, ie Repozitorijum Instituta za stočarstvo (http://r.istocar.bg.ac.rs) - Institute for Animal Husbandry, Belgrade-Zemun, Serbia
        7. rIFTD, ie Repository of IFDT (http://rifdt.instifdt.bg.ac.rs/) - Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory of the University in Belgrade, Serbia

        There are few more repositories:

        IRIES, institutional repository of scientific publications of Institute of Economic Sciences, Belgrade (ebooks.ien.bg.ac.rs), an ePrints-powered institutional repository. It also contains items that are not OA, due to copyright restrictions. Creative Commons licenses are implemented. It supports OAI 2.0.

        CrisNS (http://www.cris.uns.ac.rs/), a repository of PhD theses powered by an in-house developed software tool and maintained by the University of Novi Sad. It incorporates the openDLT-based system called PHD UNS digital library (http://dosird.uns.ac.rs/phd-uns-digital-library-phd-dissertations).

        CaSA NaRA (https://arhiva.nara.ac.rs/), the National Repository of Agricultural Education, is a DSpace-powered subject-based repository established within the Tempus project CaSA.

        Phaidra, maintained by the university libraries in Belgrade (phaidrabg.bg.ac.rs), Niš (phaidrani.ni.ac.rs) and Kragujevac (phaidrakg.kg.ac.rs), was originally intended to serve as a platform for institutional repositories of these universities. However, university staff have not shown great interest in depositing their research there and the platforms is now principally used as a thesis repository – E-THESES (eteze.bg.ac.rs). Creative Commons licenses are implemented. Since the platform does not have an OAI-PMH module, harvesting is enabled through NaRDuS.

        eLibrary  (elibrary.matf.bg.ac.rs), a  DSpace-powered OA repository of digitized materials that also contains some current research outputs. It is maintained by the Faculty of Mathematics, University of Belgrade, and the Mathematical Institute of SASA and supported by MESTD through national projects 13017 and III 044006. The deposited materials are free to read but it remains unclear whether the owners of the repository have been granted the right (by copyright holders) to make them OA.

      Data repositories

      Serbia does not have a research data management infrastructure. Major efforts are still focused on awareness raising, primarily achieved through international projects – e.g. the Institute of Economic Sciences in Belgrade has been involved in a number of projects focusing on Open access to research data in social sciences (SERSCIDASEEDS).

      National publishing initiatives

      MESTD subsidizes publishing costs for selected academic journal publishers (mostly scientific associations and research institutions) and research institutions. Subsidies are mostly focused on print editions. Publishers are not required to make their content OA. Nevertheless, the greatest part of publications eventually get freely available for readers through various channels. In January, 2019 there are 160 Serbian journals in DOAJ, Apart from individual subsidies, there are two major national projects that are specifically OA-oriented.

      SCIndeks: The Serbian Citation Index (scindeks.ceon.rs)

      SCIndeks indexes locally published scholarly journals. In addition to basic article descriptions, SCIndeks contains abstracts and references/citations (metadata) for all articles. Articles from the journals of a certain level of quality which accepted Open Access as a publishing model are available as full text. SCIndeks was initially a national project funded by the ministry responsible for science. However, in 2014, regular funding ceased and the project moved to a different business model in 2015, due to which the coverage of some journals was discontinued.SCIndeks is selected as a grantee under the Alternative Funding Mechanism for APC-free Open Access journals and platforms (FP7 Post grant Pilot). The technical improvement plans included in the funded proposals make emphasis on specific areas, such as OpenAIRE compliance, providing article-level information to the DOAJ, systematically collecting and exposing the funding information whenever it’s made available by authors and implementing ORCID. The results are presented at the mid-term progress assessment in December, 2016, and in the final report delivered on April, 2017.  Since December, 2016, SCIndeks is OpenAIRE 3.0 (OA, funding) compliant, and regularly harvested by the OpeAIRE portal.

      doiSerbia (doiserbia.nb.rs/)

      The National Library of Serbia undertook to establish cooperation with CrossRef on behalf of selected journals, as well as to create article‐level metadata for them in the appropriate format and assign DOIs to their articles. Although doiSerbia is not intended as a publishing platform, both PDFs and metadata are stored within the doiSerbia platform, on the server of the National Library. Due to this, journals which do not have a website can make their content available electronically. The ministry responsible for science has been funding the DOI assignment for 61 Serbian scholarly journals (about 30000 articles) since 2002 until present.OA has been embraced by almost all Serbian journals,  though only some of them have an explicitly defined OA policy. The project “Revisiting Open Access Journal Policies and Practices in Serbia”  (funded through EIFL-OA programme in 2016)  helped OA publishers in Serbia realize problems, implement good practices and identify possible models in their efforts towards improving OA journals. A comprehensive study “Open Access Journals in Serbia: Policies and Practices” by Milica Ševkušić at al. has been recently published; it includes good practice advice and policy and licensing templates that could be of great help to journal editors.

      NaRDuS - National Repository of Dissertations in Serbia (nardus.mpn.gov.rs)

      The Law on Higher Education (Amendments as of 2014) stipulates the establishment of a central national digital repository of PhD theses defended at all universities in Serbia – both public and private, accompanied with thesis evaluation reports. These changes are fully in line with the guidelines of the framework program of the European Union for research and innovation (Horizon 2020) and will encourage the participation of our higher education institutions in the European repository of doctoral dissertations. The NaRDuS was developed within the Tempus project RODOS (Restructuring of Doctoral Studies in Serbia). Since December, 2016, NaRDuS is OpenAIRE 3.0 (OA, funding) compliant, and regularly harvested by the OpeAIRE portal. 

      National agreements with publishers

      KoBSON, the Serbian Library Consortium for Coordinated Acquisition was established in 2001 and represents the Serbian research community. Through the National Library of Serbia, acting as a hub, the Consortium currently provides access to some 30,000 international journal titles, and more than 160,000 books. All these licenses are financed centrally by the Ministry of Science through a contract with the National Library. The KoBSON portal is the official site of the Serbian Consortium, hosted and maintained by the Center for Scientific Information at the National Library of Serbia. The portal offers integrated access to electronic content subscribed by the Consortium.

      List of national agreements:

      1. ASME Digital Library
      2. American Chemical Society
      3. American Physical Society
      4. Cambridge Journals Online
      5. EmeraldInSight
      6. HainOnline
      7. IoP Electronic Journals
      8. JSTORE
      9. MathSciNet
      10. Oxford Journals
      11. PsycARTICLES
      12. RSC OnLine
      13. SAGE Journal Online
      14. SciFinder Scholar
      15. ScienceDirect & SCOPUS
      16. Springer Link
      17. Web of Science
      18. Willey & Blackwell Interscience

      OA books

      Although OA is not mandated, a significant part of books resulting from national research projects and subsidized by MESTD are freely available to readers. However, they are often difficult to find, as they are scattered across institutional websites, social networks for researchers and Google Books, and their OA status is not always clearly stated.

    • The National portal on Open Science was launched in July, 2018, with the intention to collect and deliver all relevant information on open science in the Serbian language. The portal contains information on open science policies, guidelines and best practices.

      A new SCIndeks functionality: Policy and Licensing Support Service (2017) 

      Kickstart your ORCID ID (2017) is a set of brief video tutorials about ORCID IDs. The video's are in Serbian and should be understood throughout the Western Balkans. They are intended for all those who (still) do not have ORCID profiles, but they may also be useful for registered ORCID users who have not fully set up their profiles. Each topic is explained in a short video (about 6 minutes) aimed at helping users register and maintain their ORCID profiles.

      EIFL support leads to improvements in open access publishing policies and practices in Serbia (2016). Results were published in the article: Defining the Editorial Policies of Open Access Journals in Serbia and the Role of Librarians in This Process

      CEON/CEES: Promoting strategic planning in open access journal development (2015)

      JISC Open Access Briefing Paper - Serbian translation (2015)

      Three OpenAIRE factsheets have been translated into the Serbian language

       

    • Funding Agencies

      Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development (web page in Serbian)

      As part of the reforms, Serbia’s parliament passed legislation on 7 December, 2018 to set up a national science fund that will oversee the awarding of much-needed national research grants. The science ministry has until now been in charge of grants, but made its last call for proposals in 2010.

       

      See also Monitor Statistics of Serbia - MESTD

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