Key Challenges for AAS Journals in the Next Decade

“Summary ? The American Astronomical Society (AAS) Journals are a vital asset of our professional society. ? With the push towards open access, page charges are a viable and sustainable option for continuing to effectively fund and publish the AAS Journals. ? The existing page charge model, which requires individual authors to pay page charges out of their grants or even out of pocket, is already challenging to some researchers and could be exacerbated in the Open Access (OA) era if charges increase. ? A discussion of alternative models for funding page charges and publishing costs should part of the Astro2020 decadal survey if we wish to continue supporting the sustainable and accessible publication of US research in AAS journals in the rapidly-shifting publication landscape. ? The AAS Publications Committee recommends that the National Academy of Sciences form a task force to develop solutions and recommendations with respect to the urgent concerns and considerations highlighted in this White Paper….”

AMHP’s Open Access Option

“Many of you have read the news in an email: AMHP [Aerospace Medicine and Human Performance] will offer authors the opportunity to publish articles open access (OA). For a fee, when an AMHP article is published, it can be made available for free to anyone who wants to read it. Currently, only AsMA members and subscribers to the Journal can access AMHP articles for free. Others can use a pay-per-view option and authors can purchase a PDF which can be sent to those who request it (the modern version of reprints). It is important to note that we are offering OA as an option—it will not be required. Authors who do not wish to pay a fee and who are satisfied with their articles being published in the traditional manner can continue to publish that way.

There are several reasons why AMHP is becoming a hybrid (OA optional) journal. One is that some authors have reached out to us requesting permission to post their article on a website or in a repository. When this happens, we indicate to the author that content of their article can be posted (the final accepted manuscript) but not the way the article appears in the journal. The journal owns the copyright for each article as it appears as part of the serial publication. This arrangement works, but it is clear that some authors would prefer to post the published version of the paper. Allowing for an OA option can accommodate this desire….”

El Ministerio de Educación de la Argentina y la Coalición S: una asociación que restringirá el Acceso Abierto

“As members of the National University of La Plata, with institutional responsibilities in the visibility of scientific production, we express our concern over the decision of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Technology of the Nation to actively participate in the so-called Coalition S , an international alliance that promotes open access to scientific-academic publications, but under the “charge for publishing in open” (APC) model. Adherence to this system represents an unnecessary millionaire expense, which is also paid with public research funds….”

Libraries supports faculty member’s open-access publication through TOME | Penn State University

“A collaboration among the Association of American Universities (AAU), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and the Association of University Presses (AUP), TOME was designed to advance the wide dissemination of scholarship by humanities and humanistic social sciences faculty members through open access editions of peer-reviewed and professionally edited monographs. Its mission, according to Potter, is “to ensure that university presses can continue to publish high-quality, peer-reviewed monographs while broadly improving access to these works by scholars and the public.”

Penn State was among the first of the 14 universities that have pledged support for TOME. The Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost committed $45,000 per year to be divided among up to three subvention grants annual for five years (2018–23). …”

Plan S Consultation Response from the Society Publishers’ Coalition

“We support the principles of open scholarship and believe that open access to research outputs will benefit researchers across our shared communities. We also believe that authors should retain copyright in their works with no restrictions, and that open access publication fees should be paid by funders or institutions, not by individual researchers. Ability to pay should not be linked to ability to publish. We support the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA) as a driver to improve research assessment by evaluating the work itself, rather than using the venue of publication as a proxy for quality. We recognise the importance of open archives and repositories, such as preprint servers, for hosting research outputs, which we see as a fee-free complement to open access in journals.

Despite having these principles and ambitions in common with Plan S, we have concerns about the Plan, as it is currently written, and have detailed these below. As a group of societies that publish journals, we share a common aim of transitioning to open access in a sustainable way, and we seek to engage with funders, institutions and consortia to find a way forward within the spirit of the Plan’s principles; to this end, we have also included some suggestions of how cOAlition S can help to ensure that a transition is potentially achievable….”

North vs South – Are open access models in conflict?

“One particular challenge for researchers in the Global South is the potential for a shift from a ‘pay to read’ model of scholarly communication to a ‘pay to publish’ model in which researchers do not have the resources necessary to publish their research.

Plan S has stated that it is not focused on delivering only one business model for scholarly communication. However, Article Processing Charges (APCs) have been the only model clearly identified for financing.

If Plan S is proposing to pursue a global flip to open access, we believe that this will require the recognition and support of diverse business models and a clearer definition of the resources these organisations will need to implement these policies, much in the same way the coalition has provided guidance to commercial publishers to secure funding for APC payments.

For a system that publicly subsidises scholarly communication through academic institutions, as in Latin America, implementing charges to authors heightens the risk of breaking a structure that has been designed to support researchers and keep public money within a publicly managed ecosystem.

As Leslie Chan notes, when opening access is decontextualised from its historical and political roots, it has the potential to become as exploitative and oppressive as the system it is seeking to replace….”

Open Access in developing countries – attitudes and experiences of researchers | Zenodo

Abstract:  Open Access is often considered as particularly beneficial to researchers in the Global South. However, research into awareness of and attitudes to Open Access has been largely dominated by voices from the Global North. A survey was conducted of 507 researchers from the developing world and connected to INASP’s AuthorAID project to ascertain experiences and attitudes to Open Access publishing. The survey revealed problems for the researchers in gaining access to research literature in the first place. There was a very positive attitude to Open Access research and Open Access journals, but when selecting a journal in which to publish, Open Access was seen as a much less important criterion than factors relating to international reputation. Overall, a majority of respondents had published in an Open Access journal and most of these had paid an article processing charge. Knowledge and use of self-archiving via repositories varied, and only around 20% had deposited their research in an institutional repository. The study also examined attitudes to copyright, revealing most respondents had heard of Creative Commons licences and were positive about the sharing of research for educational use and dissemination, but there was unease about research being used for commercial purposes. Respondents revealed a surprisingly positive stance towards openly sharing research data, although many revealed that they would need further guidance on how to do so. The survey also revealed that the majority had received emails from so called ‘predatory’ publishers and that a small minority had published in them.

 

Will APC-OA lead to an exponential cost explosion? (#117) · Issues · Publishing Reform / discussion · GitLab

“We all know the increase in subscription costs for libraries (i.e., the serials crisis): (Image) A similar graph was recently published for APCs: Image source: http://doi.org/10.18352/lq.10280

Both figures seem to indicate a linear increase in costs over time. However, the subscription costs cover total cost, i.e., the increase in number of publication is covered in this cost. In other words, if you divide the yearly subscription fees by the number of articles published, you arrive at a number of about US$4-5k per article.

Remarkably, and this is crucially important here, this US$4-5k number has remained fairly constant since the 1990s!

The per-article APCs however, are not constant, they increase. The number of articles we published also increases, by about 3% every year. This means that in an APC-OA world, total spending on publishing is set to increase exponentially, as both the number of articles increases and the price per article.

In other words, if we could plot curves for expected total costs in a subscription world vs. expected costs in an APC-OA world, it would be plain obvious for anyone to see that the APC-OA costs explode, while subscription costs increase more slowly. If done well, I think such a curve could be the death-knell for the APC-OA idea. Who could help me plot that curve?…”

Will APC-OA lead to an exponential cost explosion? (#117) · Issues · Publishing Reform / discussion · GitLab

“We all know the increase in subscription costs for libraries (i.e., the serials crisis): (Image) A similar graph was recently published for APCs: Image source: http://doi.org/10.18352/lq.10280

Both figures seem to indicate a linear increase in costs over time. However, the subscription costs cover total cost, i.e., the increase in number of publication is covered in this cost. In other words, if you divide the yearly subscription fees by the number of articles published, you arrive at a number of about US$4-5k per article.

Remarkably, and this is crucially important here, this US$4-5k number has remained fairly constant since the 1990s!

The per-article APCs however, are not constant, they increase. The number of articles we published also increases, by about 3% every year. This means that in an APC-OA world, total spending on publishing is set to increase exponentially, as both the number of articles increases and the price per article.

In other words, if we could plot curves for expected total costs in a subscription world vs. expected costs in an APC-OA world, it would be plain obvious for anyone to see that the APC-OA costs explode, while subscription costs increase more slowly. If done well, I think such a curve could be the death-knell for the APC-OA idea. Who could help me plot that curve?…”

Subscribe to Open: A practical approach for converting subscription journals to open access – Crow – – Learned Publishing – Wiley Online Library

“Key points

 

OA business models must be sustainable over the long term, and article processing charge payments do not work for all; Subscribe to Open (S2O) is proposed, and being tested, as an alternative model.
The S2O model motivates subscribers to participate through economic self?interest, without reliance on institutional altruism or collective behaviour.
The S2O offer targets current subscribers, uses existing subscription systems, and recurs annually, allowing publishers to control risk and revert to conventional subscriptions if necessary.
An Annual Reviews pilot is currently testing the S2O model with five journals….”