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At the end of the last century, the combination of powerful desktop computers with electronic distribution over the internet, prepared the ground for the development of all electronic scientific journals. Today, authors routinely produce what is effectively "camera-ready copy". The rest of the production process is carried out within an all electronic publication system, and the final distribution is on the world-wide-web. Authors and referees generally carry out their work at no charge. These facts provided the stimulus for scientists and institutions to reassess the traditional subscription model of scientific publishing and to come up with a new model appropriate for the digital age; this model has been called Open Access.
In 2002 the Budapest Open Access Initiative was the first major international statement to support Open Access. The Bethesda Statement on Open Access Publishing and the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities followed in 2003. An Open Access publication is one that meets the following two conditions (see Bethesda Statement on Open Access Publishing):
There are two complementary strategies to achieve Open Access to scholarly journal literature (see Budapest Open Access Initiative):
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