Authorial and institutional stratification in open access publishing: the case of global health research [PeerJ]

Abstract:  Using a database of recent articles published in the field of Global Health research, we examine institutional sources of stratification in publishing access outcomes. Traditionally, the focus on inequality in scientific publishing has focused on prestige hierarchies in established print journals. This project examines stratification in contemporary publishing with a particular focus on subscription vs. various Open Access (OA) publishing options. Findings show that authors working at lower-ranked universities are more likely to publish in closed/paywalled outlets, and less likely to choose outlets that involve some sort of Article Processing Charge (APCs; gold or hybrid OA). We also analyze institutional differences and stratification in the APC costs paid in various journals. Authors affiliated with higher-ranked institutions, as well as hospitals and non-profit organizations pay relatively higher APCs for gold and hybrid OA publications. Results suggest that authors affiliated with high-ranked universities and well-funded institutions tend to have more resources to choose pay options with publishing. Our research suggests new professional hierarchies developing in contemporary publishing, where various OA publishing options are becoming increasingly prominent. Just as there is stratification in institutional representation between different types of publishing access, there is also inequality within access types.

Pluto interviewed with Research Stash – Pluto Network – Medium

“According to National Science Foundation, 4000 new papers are published within the scientific community every day and the number of annual publications has increased from 1 million in 2000 to more than 2 million in 2013. On the other hand, the publication fees are skyrocketing in the past few decades… wasting of research resources and leading to ineffective communications.

PLUTO a nonprofit based in Seoul, Korea wants to address this issue by creating a Decentralized scholarly communication platform which makes the scholarly communication reasonable and transparent for the scientific community.

Q. Can you tell us about your founding team members and what inspired you to build Pluto Network?

We’re attaching a separate document describing the founding members. We gathered to develop applications using blockchain technology as we were fascinated with the emerging technology and the consequences it would enable. As most of us are graduates from POSTECH, a research-focused science, and technology university in South Korea, it wasn’t long until our concerns on the implementation of the technology concluded that we must integrate it with Scholarly Communication….”

The devil you don’t know: The unexpected future of Open Access publishing | Esposito | First Monday

Abstract:  With the advent of the Internet and online publishing, the notion has arisen that access to the world’s research publications could be made available to one and all for free, presumably by shifting the costs to other places in the value chain and disintermediating publishers, a circumstance called Open Access (OA) publishing. While there are many hopes embedded in this view (lower costs, wider access, etc.), it appears more likely that Open Access will come about not through a revolution in the world of legacy publishing, but through upstart media built with the innate characteristics of the Internet in mind. An unanticipated outcome of this situation will be that the overall cost of research publications will rise, though the costs will be borne by different players, primarily authors and their proxies.

Stand der Dinge: Open Access in der Verwaltungsforschung – Open PuMa

From Google translate:

The state of affairs: Open Access in administrative research

What options are available for openly publishing articles and books, what this costs and how authors can refinance these fees.

Chen and Olijhoek 2016 have reviewed 1000 scientific journals worldwide and developed a measure of Open Access (OA) quality. Unfortunately, no specific results for individual research areas, such as administrative sciences, can be read from this study. Among other things, despite the subject of the study, no data is provided here, where you could have understood this yourself! However, Melero et al 2017 take up the instrument developed by Chen and Olijhoek and use it to examine the Spanish journal landscape. Here are the social science journals those with the highest OA rate and the strongest author rights, probably mainly because the journals are published according to this study, especially by educational and research institutions. These usually work in a nonprofit way and do not make a profit with the release.”

Cost estimates of an open access mandate for monographs in the UK’s third Research Excellence Framework

The recent ‘Consultation on the second Research Excellence Framework’ (REF) in the UK contains an annex that signals the extension of the open access mandate to monographs. In the service of promoting discussion, rather than prescribing a forward route, this article estimates the costs of implementing such a mandate based on REF 2014 volume, taking the criteria signalled in the annex, and identifies funding sources that could support it. We estimate that to publish 75% of anticipated monographic submission output for the next REF would require approximately £96m investment over the census period. This is equivalent to £19.2m per year. Academic library budgets as they are currently apportioned would not support this cost. However, these sums are but a fraction of the total quality-related funding, Arts and Humanities Research Council and Economic and Social Research Council budgets. We close with a series of provocative suggestions for how the mandate could be implemented. 

‘Inclusive access’ takes off as model for college textbook sales

Major education publishers — including Pearson, Cengage and McGraw-Hill Education — report that the number of colleges offering “inclusive-access” programs has grown rapidly in recent years. Where previously students might have been assigned textbooks individually, now many institutions are signing up whole classes of students to automatically receive digital course materials at a discounted rate, rather than purchasing individually. The “inclusive” aspect of the model means that every student has the same materials on the first day of class, with the charge included as part of their tuition. For publishers with struggling print businesses, the inclusive-access model is a lifeline. Tim Peyton, vice president of strategic partnerships at Pearson, said it was no secret that publishers like Pearson had made textbooks too expensive and had seen sales drop as a result. “The print model is really a broken business model for us,” he said, adding, “we’re thinking about how to move away from print, and move towards digital.”

If funders and libraries subscribed to open access: The case of eLife, PLOS, and BioOne [PeerJ Preprints]

“Following on recent initiatives in which funders and libraries directly fund open access publishing, this study works out the economics of systematically applying this approach to three biomedical and biology publishing entities by determining the publishing costs for the funders that sponsored the research, while assigning the costs for unsponsored articles to the libraries. The study draws its data from the non-profit biomedical publishers eLife and PLOS, and the nonprofit journal aggregator BioOne, with this sample representing a mix of publishing revenue models, including funder sponsorship, article processing charges (APC), and subscription fees. This funder-library open access subscription model is proposed as an alternative to both the closed-subscription model, which funders and libraries no longer favor, and the APC open access model, which has limited scalability across scholarly publishing domains. Utilizing PubMed filtering and manual-sampling strategies, as well as publicly available publisher revenue data, the study demonstrates that in 2015, 86 percent of the articles in eLife and PLOS acknowledged funder support, as did 76 percent of the articles in the largely subscription journals of BioOne. Twelve percent of the articles identified the NIH as a funder, 8 percent identifies other U.S. government agencies. Approximately half of the articles were funded by non-U.S. government agencies, including 1 percent by Wellcome Trust and 0.5 percent by Howard Hughes Medical Institute. For 17 percent of the articles, which lacked a funder, the study demonstrates how a collection of research libraries, similar to the one currently subscribing to BioOne, could cover publishing costs. The goal of the study is to inform stakeholder considerations of open access models that can work across the disciplines by (a) providing a cost breakdown for direct funder and library support for open access publishing; (b) positing the use of publishing data-management organizations (such as Crossref and ORCID) to facilitate per article open access support; and (c) proposing ways in which such a model offers a more efficient, equitable, and scalable approach to open access than the prevailing APC model, which originated with biomedical publishing.”

Open Knowledge Finland to produce report on the openness of key scientific publishers

“To round off a great Open Access  week, we’d like to announce a new interesting project we’ve started. Continuing our efforts in the field of Open Science, Open Knowledge Finland was commissioned by CSC – IT Center for Science and the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture to implement a Study on the Openness of Scientific Publishers.”

Open access research | Revista Pesquisa Fapesp

“Brazil stands out on the international landscape when it comes to open access, a movement launched in the early 2000s with the aim of making scientific output freely available online. According to data compiled by Spanish research group Scimago, 33.5% of the Brazilian articles indexed in the Scopus database in 2016 were published in journals whose content is free to read online as soon as it is published, under a model known as the “golden road.” This is the largest proportion among the 15 nations with the highest volume of scientific output recorded on Scopus. Brazil is also top of the list of nations with the highest number of open access scientific journals (see charts).”