I’m currently working on a PhD in the politics of open access at Birkbeck, University of London – supervised by Martin Eve and Caroline Edwards, the co-founders of Open Library of Humanities.

Being open with my own research is an important part of my practice so I always make sure journal articles and data are available and openly licensed. Opening up the content in this way is relatively simple – opening up the process is more complex, particularly for a thesis.

The style of a humanities thesis poses a challenge when it comes to sharing early stages of the work. My topic is interdisciplinary and cuts across various areas of the humanities and social sciences. It will take the form of a single long argument woven together from numerous strands. During the three years of writing many aspects of this argument will change significantly and since the only formal output of the research is the final text, any early versions could be very different.

Early drafts of either the full text or a given chapter are inherently incomplete and not yet fully thought through. They will contain mistakes, incomplete lines of thought, unclear connections, and perhaps valuable ideas which become less relevant to the final work. With these disclaimers in mind I will post occasional updates on this page for anyone who is interested in how the work is progressing.

Chapter 1: Access to Knowledge – Academic Publishing

Chapter 2: Access to Knowledge – Universities and Libraries

Chapter 3: Understanding Openness

Chapter 4: Neoliberalism, Liberty, and Openness

Chapter 5: Neoliberal Higher Education

Chapter 6: Open Access Policy in the UK

Chapter 7: The Commons as an Alternative Policy Framework


Timeline of versions:

January 2016 (month 4) – Overview, Chapter 3 draft version 0.1 (originally Chapter 1), Chapter 4 draft version 0.1, (originally Chapter 2), Chapter 6 draft version 0.1 (originally Chapter 3)

March 2016 (month 6) – Chapter 4 draft version 0.2 (originally Chapter 2)

May 2016 (month 8) – Chapter 4 draft version 0.3 (originally Chapter 2)

February 2017 (month 17) – Chapter 4 draft version 1.0 (originally Chapter 3), Chapter 6 version 0.2 (originally Chapter 5)

May 2017 (month 20) – Chapter 1 draft version 0.1

June 2017 (month 21) – Chapter 3 draft version 0.2

September 2017 (month 24) – Chapter 3 draft version 0.3