Scandinavian universities perform dismally at reporting clinical trial results

“Universities across Finland, Norway and Sweden have failed to upload the results of hundreds of clinical trials onto the EU Clinical Trial Register, in violation of EU transparency rules….”

Cancelling with the world’s largest scholarly publisher: lessons from the Swedish experience of having no access to Elsevier

Abstract:  This article covers the consequences of the decision of the Bibsam consortium to cancel its journal licence agreement with Elsevier, the world’s largest scholarly publisher, in 2018. First, we report on how the cancellation affected Swedish researchers. Second, we describe other consequences of the cancellation. Finally, we report on lessons for the future. In short, there was no consensus among researchers on how the cancellation affected them or whether the cancellation was positive or negative for them. Just over half (54%) of the 4,221 researchers who responded to a survey indicated that the cancellation had harmed their work, whereas 37% indicated that it had not. Almost half (48%) of the researchers had a negative view of the cancellation, whereas 38% had a positive view. The cancellation highlighted the ongoing work at research libraries to facilitate the transition to an open access publishing system to more stakeholders in academia than before. It also showed that Swedish vice-chancellors were prepared to suspend subscriptions with a publisher that could not accommodate the needs and requirements of open science. Finally, the cancellation resulted in the signing of a transformative agreement which started on 1 January 2020. If it had not been for the cancellation, the reaching of such an agreement would have been unlikely.

 

Cancelling with the world’s largest scholarly publisher: lessons from the Swedish experience of having no access to Elsevier

Abstract:  This article covers the consequences of the decision of the Bibsam consortium to cancel its journal licence agreement with Elsevier, the world’s largest scholarly publisher, in 2018. First, we report on how the cancellation affected Swedish researchers. Second, we describe other consequences of the cancellation. Finally, we report on lessons for the future. In short, there was no consensus among researchers on how the cancellation affected them or whether the cancellation was positive or negative for them. Just over half (54%) of the 4,221 researchers who responded to a survey indicated that the cancellation had harmed their work, whereas 37% indicated that it had not. Almost half (48%) of the researchers had a negative view of the cancellation, whereas 38% had a positive view. The cancellation highlighted the ongoing work at research libraries to facilitate the transition to an open access publishing system to more stakeholders in academia than before. It also showed that Swedish vice-chancellors were prepared to suspend subscriptions with a publisher that could not accommodate the needs and requirements of open science. Finally, the cancellation resulted in the signing of a transformative agreement which started on 1 January 2020. If it had not been for the cancellation, the reaching of such an agreement would have been unlikely.

 

Evaluation of cancellation of journal agreement with Elsevier 2018 – Kungliga biblioteket – Sveriges nationalbibliotek – kb.se

“In May 2018, the Bibsam Consortium announced that they would cancel the agreement with Elsevier as of June 30 of the same year. The cancellation has stirred attention, both in the media and in academia. Open access and how open access is negotiated into publisher agreements has become known in more parts of the research community.

 

4,221 researchers and staff responded to an open survey. Many of them chose to submit free text responses about how the cancellation had affected them.

 

The evaluation shows that the cancellation affected researchers differently. While some were not affected at all in their work (37%), others were negatively (39%) or very negatively (15%) affected. There was no consensus on whether the cancellation was good or not. Many were ambivalent. For example, they understood or supported the reason for the cancellation but were still harmed by it….

The organisations participating in the Bibsam Consortium were less affected than expected by the cancellation. The cost of information work, interlibrary loans, and alternative access services relating to the cancellation were deemed marginal….

The cancellation was also crucial for finally arriving at a new [and better] agreement in November 2019.”

Mutinous librarians help drive change at Elsevier | Financial Times

“The company is facing a profound shift in the way it does business, as customers reject traditional charging structures. Open access publishing — the move to break down paywalls and make scientific research free to read — is upending the funding model for journals, at the behest of regulators and some big research funders, while online tools and the illicit Russian pirate-site Sci-Hub are taking readers. Even Donald Trump’s administration in December began consulting on an executive order to “liberate” publicly funded research, according to people briefed on the process….

But its willingness to experiment has increased markedly since Kumsal Bayazit, an Istanbul-born former management consultant, took over as chief executive last year. Admitting Elsevier’s transition to open access was too “slow”, she is now stepping up one of the big evolutions of the company’s history….”

New report on internal cost reallocation models within the Bibsam consortium – Kungliga biblioteket – Sveriges nationalbibliotek – kb.se

“Robert van der Vooren conducted a study commissioned by the National Library of Sweden about new ways of distributing publisher contract costs to Bibsam Consortium participants. The study is intended to be a basis when the Bibsam Consortium makes cost distribution future proof for full open access publishing….”

Elsevier Progresses in Open-Access Deal Making | The Scientist Magazine®

“Last summer, dozens of academic institutions in Sweden let their Elsevier subscriptions lapse, forgoing permission to read new content in the scholarly publisher’s journals. Like other groups in Europe and the US, they were pushing for increased open access and contained costs—and had reached a deadlock in negotiations with the publisher. On Friday (November 22), the two sides announced that they had finally come to an agreement, establishing a so-called transformative deal that includes access to paywalled articles and open-accessing publishing into one fee….”

[Quoting] Wilhelm Widmark, the library director at Stockholm University and a member of the steering committee for the Bibsam consortium, which negotiates on behalf of more than 80 Swedish institutions. “I think Elsevier has become more flexible during the last couple of months.”

Just a day before the Swedish deal was made public, Elsevier and Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania announced a similar deal. These are the latest of several agreements Elsevier has forged to pilot open-access elements since the beginning of 2019. Earlier this year, for example, Hungary and Norway—both countries that had cancelled their subscriptions with the publisher after stagnant negotiations—also announced new contracts with the publisher….

As Elsevier is successfully forging deals on both sides of the Atlantic, there are still two major academic groups missing from these announcements: the University of California (UC) system, which includes 10 campuses, and Project DEAL, which represents around 700 academic institutions in Germany….”

?New transformative agreement with Elsevier enables unlimited open access to Swedish research – Kungliga biblioteket – Sveriges nationalbibliotek – kb.se

“The Bibsam Consortium is signing a Read & Publish agreement with the scientific publisher Elsevier. This means that Swedish researchers will have access to the publisher’s 2000 journals once more. In addition, all Swedish research articles will be published open access….

The previous agreement with Elsevier was terminated in 2018, as Bibsam and Elsevier were unable to reach a solution that met both parties’ requirements for sustainable prices and open access. But after negotiations, a new agreement is now in place that meets Bibsam’s requirements and reflects fair value for both sides….

The key elements of the new agreement are:

Unlimited open access publishing in Elsevier hybrid and fully gold titles, society journals, and fully gold Cell Press and The Lancet titles
A unique pilot centred around open access publishing of 100 articles per year in Cell Press hybrid journals, which covers the entire consortium’s publication output in these journals
Reading rights to the Science Direct Freedom Collection (approximately 2,000 journals) from 1995, and as an additional option Cell Press (14 journals)
Publishing with CC-BY license (or another open license, according to the author’s wishes)….”

 

#OpenGLAMnow: an upcoming series of webinars to learn to do open at your institution

“We interviewed Larissa Borck for the upcoming series of webinars that the Swedish National Heritage Board will be hosting around Open GLAM and how to open up your digital collection. The webinars will be happening between October and November at morning European time, but they will be recorded and made available. We wanted to explore with Larissa what’s the idea of the webinars, what they expect to obtain from it, and what are their plans for the future….”

Moedas: Europe should lead negotiations with academic publishers | Times Higher Education (THE)

“The European Union’s outgoing research chief has called on nations to strike deals with academic publishers together, rather than negotiating country by country and weakening their power.

Carlos Moedas, who is at the end of a five-year term as European commissioner for research, science and innovation, told Times Higher Education that negotiating with publishers was a “great example” of something the EU should take on.

In recent years several European countries including Germany, Norway and Sweden have been locked in talks with big academic publishers such as Elsevier and Springer Nature in an attempt to shift towards open access and drive down costs….

“I think that should be done at the level of the union. This is a great example of added value,” he said, referring to an area where it made sense for the EU, rather than nation states, to take the lead….”