Open Access - på gott och ont

Ulrika Nilsson


In this article I discuss the positive aspects of Open Access (OA), with it providing free access to scholarly material, particularly benefiting those countries and institutions that can’t afford the increasing cost of journal subscriptions. I contrast this with its more negative aspects when aligning OA with the scholarly field, a field that, on a closer look, is based on western values and tied up in discursive formations such as “the development discourse”, which reveals its relation to colonial attitudes. In relation to this I also examine the changed publication patterns of scholars, which has to do with the symbolic capital of publishing. Symbolic capital is acquired when publishing an article in a well renowned journal, or one with a high impact factor. It doesn’t only give the author recognition but can also be used in budget- and research funding discussions. These aspects can of course decrease the quality of the research, but an article does actually have to go through the peer review process, which guarantee it at least some quality.


Open Access; The Access Principle; Development Doscourse; Colonial attitude; Publication Patterns

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