Helping the poorest countries get access to science knowledge

Scientists can sometimes be unfairly labeled as not caring about anything apart from their lab, grant applications and drug patents.

So it’s heartening that one of our important causes – offering free subscriptions to institutions in developing countries – gains such a positive response from Faculty Members and the recipients of free subscriptions.

Faculty Members (FMs) who submit regularly are given the opportunity to nominate an institute of their choice in a developing country for free access to f1000.

One of our Plant Biology FMs, Dr John Patrick from the University of Newcastle, Australia, sponsors the Universidad Central “Marta Abreu” de las Villas in Santa Clara, Cuba. He praised the program:

“Ready access to contemporary  scientific knowledge is a recognised major impediment for the developing world to reach sustainable self-sufficiency.  The F1000 sponsorship initiative offers a powerful instrument to bridge this unacceptable divide.”
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Our recipients have been just as impressed – Gabriela Echaniz from the National Institute of Public Health, in Mexico said:

“I just want you to know how useful your service has been for all researchers that work here. Not being able to get subscriptions for many regular publications that we use for our research, your help has been invaluable. We appreciate very much your work and hope to be able to keep the subscription for many years.”
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Some of our sponsored universities and institutes include:

  • University of the South Pacific, Suva, Fiji (Linda Amos)
  • Centre de Biotechnologie de Sfax, Sfax, Tunisia (Charles Auffray)
  • International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Cali, Colombia (Seth J Davis)
  • al-Farabi Kazakh National University, Almaty, Kazakhstan (Sheila McCormick)

Our  sponsorship initiative, which extends upon the free access we already provide to institutions in the poorest countries (via HINARI),  and the global Research4Life program looks to be having an impact.

Statistics released at the World Conference of Science Journalists in July showed a six-fold increase  in research output by scientists in the developing world since 2002. A great result from a program that will continue to reduce the research divide between rich and poor countries.

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