Plan S and what it means for your journal

“Initially, 11 funding bodies signed up as cOAlition S signatories to Plan S, and this has since increased to 24. They are predominantly European-based and collectively support about 5 percent of funded articles globally. Some notable funders include Wellcome, UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the World Health Organization. Three funding bodies that originally signed up to Plan S have since left. Most notably, the European Research Council published a statement on 20th July 2020 announcing its withdrawal from cOAlition S due to Plan S’s imposition on researcher choices. Only a handful of funders will actually implement Plan S principles into their funding body agreements from 2021, with the rest deploying the principles at different times and in varying ways….

Some highlights:

 

The Plan S principles advocate for the publication of research that cOAlition S members have funded in compliant open access journals, platforms, and repositories that enable free and immediate access to the content. The author or their institutions should also retain copyright to their work. Further, the article should be published under an open re-use license, preferably the Creative Commons Attribution license (CC-BY) unless a CC-BY-ND (No Derivatives) re-use license is explicitly requested and justified by the grantee. The Gold OA model is therefore a primary compliant route for cOAlition S funders.
Journals are also compliant if they are part of Transformative Agreements (a commercial agreement with an OA component switching typical subscription costs to cover OA publishing).
For hybrid titles (subscription-based journals that allow authors to make individual articles open access upon payment of an Article Publishing Charge (APC), cOAlition S funders will not normally fund the APC. Authors are nevertheless permitted to publish through this model only if authors immediately self-archive their final published article in a repository, having first selected the Gold OA option and adopted a CC-BY license. cOAlition S will fund the APC in hybrid journals as long as the journal has a clear transitional pathway to gold open access (referred to as “transformative arrangement”) by 2024. The hybrid journal in this instance will become a Transformative Journal, and must therefore meet certain targets on its OA content share as part of its compliance with Plan S principles and commitment to transitioning.
When open access publication fees are applied, they must be commensurate with the publication services delivered, and the structure of such fees must be transparent to inform the market. Further, publishers will be asked to provide transparent breakdowns of their pricing from July 1, 2022, so that only publishers who adhere to at least one of the approved frameworks will be eligible to receive funds to support the open access APC from cOAlition S members….”

Open Letter to the American Society of Criminology Concerning Access to Its Journals: Make It Legal for Authors to Immediately, Publicly Share the Accepted Version of Their Manuscripts · Criminology Open

“We are writing with respect to the American Society of Criminology’s journals, Criminology: An Interdisciplinary Journal, and Criminology & Public Policy.undefined Their self-archiving policy prohibits authors from sharing the accepted version of their manuscripts, or “postprints,”undefined for a period of 24 months on all publicly accessible websites.

This policy is in conflict with the Society’s Purpose & Objective and Code of Ethics. It directly opposes free and open access to knowledge; hinders the study of crime and social control; impedes exchange and cooperation among stakeholders; shrinks the forum for disseminating criminological knowledge; thwarts public discourse on findings and dissemination of them; and, forbids a key countermeasure to social injustice. 

Therefore, we ask the Society to revise the journals’ self-archiving policy. It should be legal for their authors to immediately share their postprints on any website….” 

Will COVID-19 mark the end of scientific publishing as we know it?

“Under the pressure of a global health crisis, the argument for open access has sunk in. Following calls from the World Health Organization and government leaders, over 150 publishers, companies, and research institutions have agreed to temporarily make all content related to COVID-19 free to read, ensuring efforts to understand the virus can go forth undeterred….

Is this the catalyst that breaks up the bonds of an old publishing model once and for all? …”

Green OA: publishers and journals allowing zero embargo and CC-BY | Innovations in Scholarly Communication

“On July 15 2020, cOAlition S announced their Rights Retention Strategy, providing authors with the right to share the accepted manuscript (AAM) of their research articles with an open license and without embargo, as one of the ways to comply with Plan S requirements. This raises the question to what extent immediate and open licensed self archiving of scholarly publications is currently already possible and practiced. Here we provide the results of some analyses carried out earlier this year, intended to at least partially answer that question. We limit this brief study to journal articles and only looked at CC-BY licenses (not CC0, CC-BY-SA and CC-BY-ND, which can also meet Plan S requirements)….

Our main conclusions are that:

Based on stated policies we found very few (18) journals that currently allow the combination of immediate and CC-BY-licensed self archiving.
Based on stated policies of 36 large publishers, there are currently ~2800 journals with those publishers that allow immediate green, but all disallow or do not explicitly allow CC-BY….”

Re: Public Access to Peer-Reviewed Scholarly Publications, Data and Code Resulting From Federally Funded Research

“Authors Alliance welcomes the opportunity to respond to this request for information on Public Access to Peer-Reviewed Scholarly Publications, Data and Code Resulting From Federally Funded Research.1 Authors Alliance is a nonprofit organization with the mission to advance the interests of authors who want to serve the public good by sharing their creations broadly.2 We create resources to help authors understand and enjoy their rights and promote policies that make knowledge and culture available and discoverable. We strongly support removing price and permission barriers to access the results of federally funded research because doing so: • Is consistent with most scientific authors’ wishes; • Supports learning, teaching, research, and practice; and • Creates a more hospitable environment for scientific advancement….”

Open Access lessons during Covid-19: No lockdown for research results! | Plan S

“The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the world as we know it, and research is no exception. Globally, scientists are working together at unprecedented speed, in a race against time to understand the virus and its treatment, sharing data and results as fast as they can. Journal editors are cooperating and becoming more flexible. Embargoes are lifted, paywalls abolished and preprint servers like MedrXiv and bioRxiv have accelerated research evaluation and discussion. Suddenly the demand for instant access to the relevant research literature has become self-evident. How could the argument for full and immediate Open Access still be ignored?…”

Our response to the UKRI OA Review – F1000 Blogs

“To add precision to the requirements of the UKRI’s OA policy, it would be helpful for the UKRI to make clear that all types of research-based articles that are submitted for peer review at publication outlets that meet the UKRI’s qualifying standards/criteria (and for which some sort of payment is required to secure OA – predominantly though an ‘Article Processing Charge’ (APC)) are covered by the policy….

The UKRI also needs to be clear about when it will ‘pay’ to enable OA.  For example:

would the policy apply if ‘at least one author’ has UKRI HE funding? 
if there are multi-funded authors listed on an article, and one or more of the authors have access to funds to support OA, what is the role of each funder? (i.e. do they split the costs? Is there a lead? Etc) …

UKRI should require an author or their institution to retain copyright AND specific reuse rights, including rights to deposit the author’s accepted manuscript in a repository in line with the deposit and licensing requirements of UKRI’s OA policy….

 

UKRI OA funds should not be permitted to support OA publication in hybrid journals…

 

While there are some benefits around transformative agreements – not least in terms of the simplicity of achieving OA for authors! – we do worry that such ‘big deals’ can effectively reduce author choice around publishing venue, effectively lock out OA-born and smaller publishers and have the potential to create and exacerbate inequalities in access to research across the globe; this does not therefore represent good value to the public (nor does it guarantee any kind of a sustainable model of publishing).

We would advise UKRI to consider how and where transformative deals can have unintended consequences in terms of lock-ins (and potential cost tie-ins) with specific publishers (often those operating at scale) while effectively making OA-born publishers work harder to engage and access researchers. …”

Our response to the UKRI OA Review – F1000 Blogs

“To add precision to the requirements of the UKRI’s OA policy, it would be helpful for the UKRI to make clear that all types of research-based articles that are submitted for peer review at publication outlets that meet the UKRI’s qualifying standards/criteria (and for which some sort of payment is required to secure OA – predominantly though an ‘Article Processing Charge’ (APC)) are covered by the policy….

The UKRI also needs to be clear about when it will ‘pay’ to enable OA.  For example:

would the policy apply if ‘at least one author’ has UKRI HE funding? 
if there are multi-funded authors listed on an article, and one or more of the authors have access to funds to support OA, what is the role of each funder? (i.e. do they split the costs? Is there a lead? Etc) …

UKRI should require an author or their institution to retain copyright AND specific reuse rights, including rights to deposit the author’s accepted manuscript in a repository in line with the deposit and licensing requirements of UKRI’s OA policy….

 

UKRI OA funds should not be permitted to support OA publication in hybrid journals…

 

While there are some benefits around transformative agreements – not least in terms of the simplicity of achieving OA for authors! – we do worry that such ‘big deals’ can effectively reduce author choice around publishing venue, effectively lock out OA-born and smaller publishers and have the potential to create and exacerbate inequalities in access to research across the globe; this does not therefore represent good value to the public (nor does it guarantee any kind of a sustainable model of publishing).

We would advise UKRI to consider how and where transformative deals can have unintended consequences in terms of lock-ins (and potential cost tie-ins) with specific publishers (often those operating at scale) while effectively making OA-born publishers work harder to engage and access researchers. …”

Taylor & Francis input to UKRI Open Access Review – Taylor & Francis Newsroom

“We urge UKRI to focus on requiring immediate access only to the final published research output or version of record, with the certainty this OA route provides of research being trusted, validated, discoverable, curated and preserved in perpetuity. We believe that a permissive policy approach is the best way to achieve UKRI’s aims. Encouraging a diverse ecology will help support the development of innovative models and diversification of existing models, will accelerate the growth in OA and will allow new entrants to join the research communication ecosystem, encouraging competition. As we have outlined in our response, the zero embargo Green OA route is an unsustainable mechanism that implies creation of content that is not paid for. This actually runs counter to UKRI’s long term aspirations around opening up research outputs….

We encourage future OA policy in the UK to support a variety of publication venues, including those most preferred by their communities, irrespective of their open access model, as they are the vehicles that drive research, being used and trusted by their communities. We are exploring options for hybrid journals other than the APC-OA model that will allow them to make their publications more widely available. We are keen to explore with UKRI, other funders, and researchers how we can best support these journals as they move to OA, and how we can offer sustainable publication venues across disciplines….”

Taylor & Francis input to UKRI Open Access Review – Taylor & Francis Newsroom

“We urge UKRI to focus on requiring immediate access only to the final published research output or version of record, with the certainty this OA route provides of research being trusted, validated, discoverable, curated and preserved in perpetuity. We believe that a permissive policy approach is the best way to achieve UKRI’s aims. Encouraging a diverse ecology will help support the development of innovative models and diversification of existing models, will accelerate the growth in OA and will allow new entrants to join the research communication ecosystem, encouraging competition. As we have outlined in our response, the zero embargo Green OA route is an unsustainable mechanism that implies creation of content that is not paid for. This actually runs counter to UKRI’s long term aspirations around opening up research outputs….

We encourage future OA policy in the UK to support a variety of publication venues, including those most preferred by their communities, irrespective of their open access model, as they are the vehicles that drive research, being used and trusted by their communities. We are exploring options for hybrid journals other than the APC-OA model that will allow them to make their publications more widely available. We are keen to explore with UKRI, other funders, and researchers how we can best support these journals as they move to OA, and how we can offer sustainable publication venues across disciplines….”