ANZOS wishes to express its deep alarm at the Australian Research Council's decision to rule numerous DECRA and Future Fellowship grants in the recent grant cycle ineligible on the basis of citation of preprints and arxiv papers by authors other than the applicant.
Citation of relevant arxiv works is ubiquitous practice in optics and physics and is an essential part of accurately reflecting the state of the art in a professional manner in many sub-fields of our discipline. Grant applicants are placed in an impossible position by this policy which prohibits them from appropriately acknowledging prior literature and thereby risks criticism from reviewers for misrepresenting the background to a proposal.
ANZOS urges the ARC to reevaluate this policy and its impact on applicants as a highest priority. We are in consultation with partner stakeholder organisations regarding formal communications with the ARC.