For the Public Good: Our values in a changing scholarly communication landscape | Scholarly Publishing & Open Access

The negotiations between UC and Elsevier are part of an accelerating, worldwide movement to transform scholarly communication, to ensure knowledge is shared broadly and without barriers, and to further enhance inquiry and discovery. We applaud UC’s attempt to explore new and different models for providing access to scholarship. And we stand in support of finding new pathways to build and negotiate transformative models that create collaborative and sustainable long-term solutions. As stated in our Strategic Plan, UW Libraries works to advance research for the public good because we believe that “UW research attains its greatest impact on our most pressing global challenges when we advocate for open, public and emerging forms of scholarship.” “

Ghost – The Professional Publishing Platform

“We’re a proud non-profit organisation building open source technology for journalism….

Our mission is to create the best open source tools for independent journalists and writers across the world, and have a real impact on the future of online media.

Today Ghost powers an incredible range of websites; from individual bloggers who are just getting started, to large teams of writers and editors at some of the largest organisations in the world. We’ve built a sustainable business around a free core application, funded by a premium platform as a service to run it on….

We set Ghost up as non-profit foundation so that it would always be true to its users, rather than shareholders or investors. Our legal constitution ensures that the company can never be bought or sold, and one hundred percent of our revenue is reinvested into the product and the community….”

cRegulome: an R package for accessing microRNA and transcription factor-gene expression correlations in cancer [PeerJ]

Abstract:  Background

Transcription factors and microRNAs play a critical role in regulating the gene expression in normal physiology and pathological conditions. Many bioinformatics tools were built to predict and identify transcription factor and microRNA targets and their role in the development of diseases including cancers. The availability of public access high-throughput data allows researchers to make data-driven predictions.


Here, we developed an R package called cRegulome to access, manage and visualize data from open source databases. The package provides a programmatic access to the regulome (transcription factor and microRNA) expression correlations with target genes of different cancer types. It obtains a local instance of Cistrome Cancer and miRCancerdb databases and provides classes and methods to query, interact with and visualize the correlation data.


cRegulome is available on the comprehensive R archive network (CRAN) and the source code is hosted on GitHub as part of the ROpenSci on-boarding collection,

Discovery – GO FAIR

“The main purpose of the Discovery IN is to provide interfaces and other user-facing services for data discovery across disciplines. We explore new and innovative ways of enabling discovery, including visualizations, recommender systems, semantics, content mining, annotation, and responsible metrics. …”

Plan S: how open access can nurture new positive and collective forms of ‘academic freedom’ – Samuel Moore

Following on from my last post on academic freedom and statements of principle, I want to further clarify my thoughts on how academic freedom relates to open access mandates. Paradoxically, despite claiming that objections to open access mandates on the grounds of academic freedom are mere conservatism, it is likely that the coercive aspect of mandates is what perpetuates such objections….”

Norway becomes latest country to ditch Elsevier | Times Higher Education (THE)

Norway has become the latest country to sever its contract with Elsevier in a move that could cost the publisher €10 million (£8.6 million) a year.

It follows Germany, SwedenHungary and the University of California system, which have ditched the publisher over complaints of high prices and insufficient progress towards open access….”


Making Waves – Assessing the potential impacts of Plan S on the scholarly communications ecosystem | Impact of Social Sciences

“The potential impacts of Plan S (a funder led plan to accelerate a global flip to open access to research publications) on the wider research ecosystem are only beginning to be understood. Citing evidence from a recent report by the Institute for Scientific Information on Plan S funded research papers, Dr Martin Szomszor, outlines what the impact of the plan might be on four key aspects of scholarly communication….”

Norske forskningsinstitusjoner har besluttet å ikke forlenge avtale med forlaget Elsevier | Unit

From Google’s English: “The offer from Elsevier is far from fulfilling the requirements of Norway for open access to research articles. Nor is there any movement in the agreement’s period against paying for publishing instead of paying for reading access. The agreement with Elsevier is therefore not renewed for 2019. The Rectorates at BOTT (the universities in Bergen, Oslo, Tromsø and Trondheim) support the decision.

The Government’s goal is for all Norwegian scientific articles financed by public funds to be openly available by 2024. The main objective is to go from paying to read articles via subscription to paying for having articles that are openly available. Unit – The Directorate for ICT and Joint Services for Higher Education and Research has, since the Government’s national goals and guidelines came in 2017, negotiated with Elsevier about an agreement that will ensure such open access to articles published by Norwegian researchers. Unit negotiates and manages agreements on behalf of Norwegian research institutions. The agreement with Elsevier, known as the Science Direct Freedom Collection, has 44 Norwegian participants from universities, university colleges, research institutes and health enterprises. It is the largest deal unit dealer.

  • In order to succeed with the transition to open publishing, the negotiations have been carried out based on a set of principles:
  • Articles with corresponding authors from Norway shall be openly available at the time of publication
  • Open publishing should not increase the total cost of the agreements
  • Full transparency in license terms, costs and business models
  • Permanent access to content published in subscription journal
  • Movement is to be shown against agreements where costs are related to the volume of Norwegian institutions’ publication….”

Norway Joins List of Countries Canceling Elsevier Contracts | The Scientist Magazine®

“Norway has become latest country to cancel its contracts with Elsevier following a dispute over access to research papers. In a statement published yesterday (March 12), the Norwegian Directorate for ICT and Joint Services in Higher Education and Research (UNIT), which represents a consortium of research institutions in the country, rejected Elsevier’s offer to lower some of its costs for Norwegian institutions because it didn’t go far enough to promote free access to published research.

“The offer from Elsevier is far from fulfilling the requirements of Norway for open access to research articles,” the agency says in a statement (translated by Google). “Nor is there any movement in the agreement [about] paying for publishing instead of paying for reading access. The agreement with Elsevier is therefore not renewed for 2019.”

Norwegian institutions had been arguing for a so-called “read-and-publish” arrangement. Currently, most institutions pay both to read articles on Elsevier, which hosts around academic 2,500 journals, and to provide open access to their own articles on the platform. A read-and-publish deal would combine those costs into one and make papers immediately available on publication….”

UC Press Supports University of California’s Stance on Elsevier – UC Press Blog

As the publishing arm of the University of California system, UC Press supports the UC libraries in their cancellation of the Elsevier “big deal” package. As small to medium-sized publishers of largely humanities and social sciences (HSS) journals, university presses (including UC Press) have had to compete for diminishing library resources to support our publishing programs. Due to the growing costs of these “big deal” packages, libraries cannot afford to subscribe to valuable journals from university presses with greater frequency. As a result, crucial HSS scholarship is difficult or impossible to access outside of R1 universities. (R1 is the classification for doctoral universities with “very high research activity” access)….”