Stanford Professor Begins An Open Access Expedition

Submitted by Alonzo LaMont on Mon, 12/17/2012 - 12:54pm

I stumbled across, practically as a footnote, this nugget regarding Dr. Axel Brunger, a Molecular and Cellular Physiologist. Dr. Brunger's decision to disregard traditional publishing outlets in favor of a newly created Open Access e-journal is one of those "small steps for mankind." Perhaps more Scientists, particularly more established Scientists will examine this new option in the medical news delivery business. The more high-profile Scientists that follow this yellow-brick-road, the more critical reflection will be re-directed towards mainstream journal publishers.

As the article states, the dominoes have already started to fall. You can almost feel the rationale behind Dr. Bruner's actions. He's successfully navigated through these waters before. He's made a name and a career for himself. But you and I have either seen or witnessed other mid-career professionals from a variety of careers come to a similar divide. A similar question. Do we continue along the safe path, or do we venture into the Great Unknown? You don't have to be a Scientist to know this terrain. As we "mature," we all face the mirror and wonder, are risks just too great?

Or, do you take that deep breath and realize that over the course of your lifetime..........you've probably accumulated all the courage you'll ever need. I'm not sure if we find it---or it finds us. Call it maturity. Or willingness. You could even call it "courage osmosis" since like magic, there it is, and we may never have realized it. But it is courage. Wherever it comes from.  

Alonzo LaMont

alonzo@jhmi.edu