For immediate release
January 19, 2011
For more information, contact:
Director, Right to Research Coalition
+01 202 296 2296
nick [at] arl [dot] org
Liaison Officer for Medical Education Issues, International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations (IFMSA)
+31 6 52020717
lme [at] ifmsa [dot] org
World’s largest medical student organization throws weight behind Open Access; Student-led Right to Research Coalition now represents nearly 7 million students internationally
WASHINGTON DC, USA and AMSTERDAM, THE NETHERLANDS – In a move that demonstrates the building global momentum for student commitment to Open Access, the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations (IFMSA) today announced its membership in the Right to Research Coalition, an international alliance of undergraduate and graduate student organizations that promotes a more open scholarly publishing system through advocacy and education.
Based in Amsterdam, IFMSA is one of the world’s leading student organizations, representing over 1.2 million medical students, and aims to serve medical students all over the world. Starting this month, IFMSA will begin working with the coalition’s 30 other member organizations to promote a more open scholarly publishing system by educating students about Open Access and advocating for policies that expand access to the results of research.
“We fully support the initiative of the Right to Research Coalition and the tenets of the Student Statement on the Right to Research,” said Chijioke Kaduru, IFMSA’s President. “We believe that Open Access to research will positively benefit all aspects of health care; it will improve the knowledge of health care workers, researchers and medical students by making crucial information easy to access. Open Access will also improve and democratize medical education by expanding access to research articles so crucial to students’ training, strengthening the IFMSA vision of equity for medical students worldwide. We look forward to working with the Right to Research Coalition and its other members to improve access to research and make Open Access to the full scholarly record a reality.”
Founded in 2009, the Right to Research Coalition has expanded rapidly into an international alliance of student organizations representing a wide variety of disciplines. With IFMSA, the members of the Right to Research Coalition now represent nearly 7 million students throughout the world and continue to grow as a powerful force in expanding access to research.
“IFMSA brings a real global presence to our coalition,” said Nick Shockey, Director of the Right to Research Coalition. “Students in every corner of the globe are affected by limited access to research. We hope to expand our membership to reflect the global importance of Open Access and to help forge a global solution. We’re excited to begin collaborating with IFMSA on this issue of such importance to both medical and non-medical students alike.”
IFMSA is an independent, non-governmental and non-political federation of medical students’ associations throughout the world. In 2010, IFMSA consists of national medical student associations in 97 countries on six continents. IFMSA’s members represent around 1,200,000 medical students worldwide.
Since 1951, IFMSA has been run for and by medical students on a non-profit basis. Officially recognized as a Non Governmental Organization within the United Nations’ system, it is recognized by the World Health Organization as the international forum for medical students. IFMSA is registered as a charitable organization in the Netherlands.
About the Right to Research Coalition
Founded by students in the summer of 2009, the Right to Research Coalition is an international alliance of 31 undergraduate and graduate student organizations, representing nearly 7 million students, that promotes a more open scholarly publishing system. The Right to Research Coalition believes that no student should be denied access to the scholarly articles they need, because they or their institution cannot afford access. The coalition works to educate the next generation of scholars and researchers about Open Access and to advocate for policies at the campus, national, and international levels that expand access to the results of research.