The Oberlin Group is made up of 75 libraries of highly selective liberal arts colleges from across the United States. Of these, 23 have chosen to support Open Access by participating in BioMed Central's membership program.
According to Will Bridegam, Librarian of the College, Amherst College,
"The Oberlin Group Libraries support the concept of open access as a viable solution to the problem of offering affordable access to critical information in a time of rapidly escalating journal prices."
BioMed Central, the largest Open Access publisher, has seen its membership program go from strength to strength. Over 300 organizations worldwide became members in 2003. These included the NHS in England and all UK universities, all institutions in Ohio, USA, all publicly funded Finnish institutions and the Max Planck Society, Germany. BioMed Central now has over 450 members in 40 countries, of which more than 130 are in the US.
About BioMed Central
BioMed Central (www.biomedcentral.com/) is an independent online publishing house committed to providing immediate access without charge to the peer-reviewed biological and medical research it publishes. This commitment is based on the view that open access to research is essential to the rapid and efficient communication of science. In addition to open-access original research, BioMed Central also publishes reviews and other subscription-based content.
BioMed Central's business model is based on charging authors to publish, and then making the content free to readers. Under membership agreements, authors from member institutions will not be asked to pay an article processing charge when publishing research. The charge is instead covered by the institution's BioMed Central membership. This applies to all of BioMed Central's journals 110+ peer-reviewed journals. Upon acceptance, the article becomes available online without charge to readers worldwide.
BioMed Central's Institutional Membership Program was launched in January 2002 and now has well over 400 members, including some of the world's most prestigious academic institutions.
About the Oberlin Group
The Oberlin Group is "an informal organization of liberal arts college libraries, represented by their directors, that exists for discussion, the sharing of ideas, collegiality, the sharing of statistics and other cooperative activities that these directors are empowered by their institutions to make." They became known as the Oberlin Group because of the location of their first meeting - held at Oberlin College, Ohio in 1984. The Group consists of 75 liberal arts colleges across the United States.