Open Access Advocate Jan Velterop on Leaving Springer

Jan Velterop has posted "Onwards from Open Access" on his Weblog The Parachute in which he discusses his decision to leave his position Director of Open Access at Springer to join Knewco.

Here's an excerpt from the posting:

As many of my readers will already know, I have recently decided to leave my position of Director of Open Access at Springer for that of CEO of Knewco Inc. Several reactions that I have since received indicate to me that my move is not necessarily understood by everyone, and I've even seen speculations that my leaving open access might mean that it is not going anywhere at Springer.

Let me say the following to that. First of all, OA has developed some very solid roots within Springer and I am most confident that OA is being further developed with alacrity by my successors at Springer.

Secondly, I don’t feel that I am leaving open access. Open access is not some club that one is a member of or not; it is a 'thought form' that one adheres to. And open access is only one of the ways in which the speed, efficiency and quality of scientific discovery can be enhanced. . . .

If the underlying motive is, however, to get the most out of the scientific knowledge that has been gathered, which it is in my case, then moving on from open access to the semantic web—the concept web, if you wish—feels, at least to me, an entirely logical step. . . . We are in a situation of overwhelming—and growing—abundance of scientific information, and methods that deal with that abundance are clearly needed. This is what Knewco people are working on, and I am very excited to join them.