In Memoriam of Victor Venema

Published by Access 2 Perspectives on

Originally published at

It is with heavy hearts that we write this post in response to the recent and sudden death of Victor Venema, founder of Translate Science. We extend our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends. Victor was the driving force behind Translate Science — an initiative to facilitate and foster the translation of scientific texts. 

Victor strongly advocated for open-source digital technology and a decentralized, accessible, community-owned scholarly infrastructure. With a clear vision for open source tools and open scholarly infrastructure, Victor led by example without imposing his way of working. Rather, he invited others to follow his lead and respected unique contributions. This was typical of his inclusive style which allowed him to gather a diverse crowd of activists and welcome the contribution of their talents and energies into advancing the mission of Translate Science.

As a community builder, the help and support that Victor extended to others has left a lasting impression on us. He is an inspiration for those involved in Translate Science and the wider open science communities. Academia perpetuates global inequalities, all too easily ignores human rights in terms of access to knowledge, and has neglected making scientific literature accessible through translation. Victor’s community organizing to address such inequalities has led to development of ideas and tools to make a difference in terms of knowledge equity. 

We acutely feel the loss of Victor, but will do our best to carry on the vision and values of Translate Science as it has been  shaped by his foundational contributions. 

Other eulogies and condolences 

Victor’s research contributions

Related reading

Tennant, J., Agarwal, R., Baždarić, K., Brassard, D., Crick, T., Dunleavy, D. J., … Yarkoni, T. (2020, March 6). A tale of two ‘opens’: intersections between Free and Open Source Software and Open Scholarship.   


Axel Dürkop, 0000-0002-8154-8988
Ben Trettel, 0000-0001-9879-626X
Danny Chan, 0000-0002-8082-2316
Dasapta Erwin Irawan, 0000-0002-1526-0863
Jennifer Miller, 0000-0001-5459-6733
Jo Havemann, 0000-0002-6157-1494 
Oliver Czulo, 0000-0003-4408-5811
Simon Worthington, 0000-0002-8579-9717