Hinari in an Open Access World
Hinari and other schemes to provide free or reduced cost access to scholarly journals in resource poor and developing countries are a key means by which the publishers of toll access journals: (1) achieve an important good for humanity and/or (2) whitewash their business practices in the face of charges of exploitative conduct and in the context of ethics-based calls for open access. The withdrawal of a number of journals from the Hinari scheme has prompted a great deal of frustrated commentary from those who watch the scholarly publishing scene. Find an account of the controversy and a reflection on the future status of such endevors here: http://blogs.plos.org/speakingofmedicine/2011/01/14/what-next-for-hinari-in-an-open-access-world/.
For AAA participation in such initiatives, see: http://www.aaanet.org/issues/AAA-Gives-Back.cfm .
UPDATE: Springer explains that the program at issue in the recent debate is INASP program rather than HINARI. See: http://www.springer.com/about+springer/media/pressreleases?SGWID=0-11002-6-1067521-0.