Kumsal Bayazit, Elsevier CEO, shares her vision for building a better future in research

“First and foremost, I want to be very clear: Elsevier fully supports open access….

In fact, my professional background is in applying technology to content to help professionals make better decisions. For example, working in the part of RELX that serves legal professionals, I’ve seen the powerful benefits of analytical services that are built on top of freely available content, such as case law. This is why I’m excited by the potential to create value for researchers by applying text-mining and artificial intelligence technologies to the entire corpus of peer-reviewed content. I understand and appreciate the role that open access can play in delivering that vision.

The question is not whether open access is desirable or beneficial — the question is how we get there. My takeaway from my discussions on the topic is that there are many points of view. Publishers are often blamed for not making enough progress, which I think is fair. But it would also be unfair not to recognize the lack of alignment within our communities about the best way forward, which is understandable as this is a multi-dimensional issue that requires substantial problem-solving and action to make progress.

I am a pragmatist, and I commit to working pragmatically with libraries and other stakeholders to achieve shared open access goals. Part of this means acknowledging obstacles where they exist and discussing them openly and objectively so that we can find solutions to overcome them. If we don’t, progress will continue to be slow. I feel optimistic given the extent of commitment to make progress. In that spirit, please allow me to share t some of the obstacles that I have learned about in the last nine months….”

New funds needed to cover open-access costs

“The international Plan S research-funder consortium cOAlition S proposes that institutional libraries should transition from subscription to ‘pure publish’ deals with open-access journals by 2024 (see Nature 572, 586; 2019). However, the coalition represents just 16 European funding agencies and 3 international charity foundations. Many other European funders are not in a position to pay open-access publication fees on behalf of their researchers.

For example, Denmark’s 14,000 private foundations that currently support half of the country’s research are stretched to the limit. Their researchers will therefore have no choice but to pay the bill out of their own research grants, which are already under intense pressure from spiralling costs.

Remedial action is urgently needed if publication and knowledge flow are not to be skewed towards the wealthiest countries and universities. For example, national or European Union funds could be established to help cash-strapped researchers cover their publishing costs.”

A new era for research publication: Will Open Access become the norm? – Hotta – – Journal of Diabetes Investigation – Wiley Online Library

“This new challenge [Plan S] causes some concerns to us. This program is unlikely to be equivalent between Europe and the United States8). because key US federal agencies such as National Institute of Health (NIH), mandate a ‘green’ Open Access policy, whereby articles in subscription journals are automatically made available after a 12-month embargo. This policy protects the existing ‘paywalled’ subscription business model. Also, ‘Plan S’ does not allow for scientists to publish their papers in hybrid journals….

One piece of bright news, however, is that Open Access publication fees would be covered by funders or research institutions, not by individual researchers. Although our journal is already Open Access, we have some concerns regarding the publication fee being covered by either researchers or institutions….”

Given that the publishing industry is approaching a new era in which 85% or more of journals are Open Access, it is necessary for us to develop a survival strategy against this coming fierce competition….

Guest Post – Transparency: What Can One Learn from a Trove of Invoices? – The Scholarly Kitchen

“The dataset Ashley [Farley] provided us [from the Gates Foundation] (covering the period from August 1, 2016, to March 31, 2019) includes:

3,268 invoices for articles in peer-reviewed journals
720 journals
90 publishers

In total the Foundation paid $9,002,225 to these publishers to ensure results of all Foundation research was disseminated with a CC BY license with no embargos — an average cost for “open” of $2,755 per article.

We think we’ve uncovered some interesting trends in this data, but our main objective is to share the research dataset we have developed, along with the Foundation’s original invoicing data. That way anyone can use these for further research….

In 2016, only 22% of authors were choosing to publish in fully-OA journals; in 2019, 50% have done so….

Traditional publishers charge significantly more for APCs than OA-only publishers….

Researchers choosing to publish in a fully OA Journal show a strong preference for OA-only publishers’ titles….

There are no significant differences in for-profit vs. non-profit publishers’ APCs for fully OA journals….”

The effect of “open access” on journal impact factors: A causal analysis of medical journals – NASA/ADS

Abstract:  The Journal Impact Factor (JIF) has a significant influence on authors of research paper submissions. Whether open access (OA) is beneficial to JIFs and the dissemination of academic research results remains an under-examined issue. Using panel data analysis to address this question, the present study analyzed medical journals extracted from databases such as Web of Science and Ulrich’s Periodicals Directory. The results indicate a causal relationship between JIFs and OA, and specifically that: (1) OA enhances JIFs; (2) countries that are less developed in science and technology are more likely to choose OA for publishing papers; (3) authors’ publication language and number of published papers, as well as publication release cycles all have significant effects on JIFs.

 

The effect of “open access” on journal impact factors: A causal analysis of medical journals – NASA/ADS

Abstract:  The Journal Impact Factor (JIF) has a significant influence on authors of research paper submissions. Whether open access (OA) is beneficial to JIFs and the dissemination of academic research results remains an under-examined issue. Using panel data analysis to address this question, the present study analyzed medical journals extracted from databases such as Web of Science and Ulrich’s Periodicals Directory. The results indicate a causal relationship between JIFs and OA, and specifically that: (1) OA enhances JIFs; (2) countries that are less developed in science and technology are more likely to choose OA for publishing papers; (3) authors’ publication language and number of published papers, as well as publication release cycles all have significant effects on JIFs.

 

Open access efforts begin to bloom: ESC Heart Failure gets full attention and first impact factor

Abstract:  In 2014, the Heart Failure Association (HFA) of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) founded the first open access journal focusing on heart failure, called ESC Heart Failure (ESC?HF). In the first 5 years, in ESC?HF we published more than 450 articles. Through ESC?HF, the HFA gives room for heart failure research output from around the world. A transfer process from the European Journal of Heart Failure to ESC?HF has also been installed. As a consequence, in 2018 ESC?HF received 289 submissions, and published 148 items (acceptance rate 51%). The journal is listed in Scopus since 2014 and on the PubMed website since 2015. In 2019, we received our first impact factor from ISI Web of Knowledge / Thomson?Reuters, which is 3.407 for 2018. This report reviews which papers get best cited. Not surprisingly, many of the best cited papers are reviews and facts & numbers mini reviews, but original research is also well cited.

Suomalaiset tiedelehdet DOAJ-rekisteriin -seminaari 3.12.2019 | julkaisufoorumi.fi

“DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals) and the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies (TSV) are Collaborating on a Pilot Project to Promote and Help Peer-reviewed Open Access (OA) Journals published in Finland to be indexed in DOAJ. An open information event will be held on December 3 at 10 am – 12 pm at the House of Science and Letters (Kirkkokatu 6, Helsinki). Remote participation is also possible. Some of the presentations will be in Finnish and some in English….”

We have removed the Seal on more than 40 journals – News Service

“DOAJ constantly reviews existing records in DOAJ to ensure that they meet DOAJ criteria, particularly those with the Seal.

Recently 1432 journals in DOAJ had the Seal. Today that number is 1339. Journals that have been awarded the Seal adhere to outstanding best practice and meet to our 7 carefully chosen criteria. These criteria are indicators of high commitment to open access best practices.

In the last few weeks, we performed an in-depth review of the journals with the Seal to check they still comply with these criteria. After the review, we found out that 45 of the journals no longer met one or more of the criteria. We contacted all the journals in this situation and we are happy to communicate that we have already restored some of the Seals….”