Plan T: Scrap APCs and Fund Open Access with Submission Fees – The Scholarly Kitchen

“APCs have the unfortunate feature that the authors pay for the assessment of all the other submissions that ended up being rejected. Manuscripts rejected from multiple OA journals thus contribute to the APCs of several different authors. Is it fair for authors of good articles to pay for the peer review of others’ lower quality work? Moreover, journals that do lots of peer review to find one acceptable article have higher APCs, as illustrated by the figure below….

Breaking down an APC and how it relates to submission numbers and acceptance rates suggests another way to cover publication costs: a submission fee of $350 and a publication fee of $850 would generate the same revenue as the current APCs at these journals. (This approach has been suggested before, see herehere, and here.)…

The introduction of submission fees also affects submission patterns, most notably by steering away articles with only slim chances of acceptance. This effect would change the calculations in the figure above: fewer low quality articles arrive, so acceptance rates rise and hence reduce income from submission fees. However, a drop in submissions also means a drop in costs, as those weak articles no longer need to be processed through the system….

A drop in submissions is not fatal for the submission fee math – even a 30% fall can be accommodated by raising the submission fee to $500, or by raising the submission fee to $400 and the publication fee to $1100. Journals would adjust their submission fees within some reasonable range depending on their brand perception, current levels of submissions, and a desire to remain competitive with other journals in the field. Journals with high fees may even be able to signal the higher quality of their review and publishing process.

Submission fees have other useful properties. First, they are ‘pay as you go’ for peer review: they penalize authors who submit low quality articles over and over to different journals, and reward those who prepare their work to a high standard and submit it to the most appropriate outlet.

Similarly, submission fees counteract the perverse incentives created when authors receive financial rewards for publishing in high impact journals, which is a major driver for inappropriate submissions. If they had to pay each time, would as many authors take a wild stab at getting their incremental work published in a top journal, then working their way, journal by journal, down the Impact Factor rankings until they reach an appropriate level?

Submission fees also bring peer review into line with lots of other services that cost money regardless of whether you succeed or fail, such as professional exams or even dental check-ups. Viewed through this lens, the ‘no win, no fee’ approach of APCs seems like an anomaly….”

Should authors pay to submit their papers? · john hawks weblog

“An article by Tim Vines in The Scholarly Kitchen looks at the pay-to-submit model of open access publication: “Plan T: Scrap APCs and Fund Open Access with Submission Fees”….

The article is worth considering. Articles cost money to publish. If we insist upon journal publication, that money needs to come from somewhere. I would be happy if my university subsidized submission of papers to open-access journals instead of subscriptions to closed-access journals.

However, I tend to agree with Richard Sever, who tweeted a link to the article and commented:

Plan U: just mandate preprint deposition and let a downstream ecosystem of overlays/journals with various business models evolve in response to community needs. Side benefit: speeding up science massively… “

Some (serious) open access journals in mathematics | theHigherGeometer

“The following list was originally compiled by Thomas Sauvaget on his blog, Episodic Thoughts, now in stasis. He gave me permission to now host it here and update it as I see fit. If you feel that there is a respectable open access maths journal missing, preferably one that does not charge APCs, then let me know in the comments. Please search in the comments at Thomas’ post to see if it hadn’t already been suggested. I will edit this post as needed, and note that at present I haven’t gone through the list to double check all of these. I will place the checked list under an Creative Commons license at some point….”

Astronomy & Astrophysics signs transformative Open Access agreement with Max Planck Society

“Paris, France 18 December 2018. Astronomy & Astrophysics (A&A) the international Journal that publishes papers on all aspects of astronomy and astrophysics and one of the leading journals in its field, has signed a two-year transformative Open Access agreement with the Max Planck Society in Germany. Under this agreement, funds previously paid by the Max Planck Digital Library for subscriptions will, instead, be converted into a publishing fund, enabling corresponding authors from the Max Planck Institutes to publish their articles open access in A&A, and at the same time, granting access to the journal’s content to all Max Planck researchers.”

Sustainable Open Access and Impact: Celebrating OA Week | Policy Press Blog

We [Bristol Universityh Press] offer a range of flexible open access options for both journals and book publishing which continue to evolve, and we are always interested in working with our authors to explore new ideas.

Both Green and Gold options are available for all our journal and book content and we are flexible to allow for funder compliance. See our open access options for books and open access options for journals for more information.

For journals our OA content is available to access on our IngentaConnect platform where it is clearly signposted.

For books we make our OA content available via OAPEN and JSTOR and we are delighted to be a part of the Knowledge Unlatched collections which are funded by libraries.

We offer discounts on our standard APCs to researchers in developing countries and to those in institutions who subscribe to our journal collections….”

Who are you writing for? The role of community membership on authors’ decisions to publish in open access mega-journals | Impact of Social Sciences

“Open Access mega-journals have in some academic disciplines become a key channel for communicating research. In others, however, they remain unknown. Drawing on evidence from a series of focus groups, Jenny Fry and Simon Wakeling explore how authors’ perceptions of mega-journals differ across disciplines and are shaped by motivations associated with the multiple communities they function within….”

JCI – Free access to scientific publications: contrasting the JCI approach to Plan S

The JCI has made all of its research freely available to readers since 1996. As open access mandates from funders, such as Plan S, gain momentum, it’s worth revisiting how the JCI has created a durable publication model for free access to research and the benefits that society journals provide to the research community….”


Is converting journals to open access less popular than 10 years ago? | Open Science

2014 was the year of groundbreaking conversions to open access. The most publicized-one was the transition of Nature Communications, which revealed that open access is attractive even for the most reputable journals worldwide. The conversion of 8 Central European Journals was also accomplished this year by De Gruyter Open, and was a significant change for researchers in the region, and hopefully it will prove to be important for global community. Due to this recent development I was quite surprised when I came back to the paper by David J. Solomon, Bo-Christer Bjork and Mikael Laakso “A longitudinal comparison of citation rates and growth among open access journals”, which has been already discussed on this blog.

The thing which surprised me is the graph attached to the text, representing the number of journals that converted to open access each year. The graph is based on data from SCOPUS and DOAJ. According to this data the number of journal conversions had been growing gradually year by year from 1995 to 2000, but then it started to decline, which is hard to explain. Eventually, in 2012, it reached a lower value than in 1997….”