Open Access, Open Data Increase Demand for STM Online Services

“Scientific, technical and medical publishers face upheaval from open access and open data, but this transition represents opportunity in online services, particularly for competitors that can develop broader discovery tools and dynamic content capabilities to win users’ loyalty—this according to the most recent report from Simba Information, a leader in media and publishing intelligence.

The report STM Online Services 2019-2023 focuses on the databases that offer online content or abstracting and indexing and are sold to academic, government and commercial customers. It found that between 2016 and 2018, online services revenue grew at a compound annual rate of 5.1% after elimination of trade between competitors — faster than STM journals or books. Growth was boosted somewhat by currency exchange in the period. Simba estimates the currency impact at roughly 1% over the two years.

Many of the products and services are already considered “must have” information sold in multi-year, multi-million-dollar bundles. As the corpus of data made open by research funder mandates grows, the value publishers provide will shift back toward discovery and integration….

STM Online Services 2019-2023 provides detailed market information for STM online services, segmented by: sci-tech standards, patents and online content, drug databases, clinical reference, training and certification, reference management and analytical tools, sci-tech abstracting and indexing, medical abstracting and indexing. It analyzes trends impacting the industry and forecasts market growth to 2023….”

Open Access Market Sizing Update 2019 – Delta Think

“Delta Think’s OA Market Sizing shows that the open access market continues to grow faster than the underlying journals publishing market, and faster than we previously expected. (Market Size represents revenue generated by providers or, conversely, costs incurred to buyers of content.) We estimate it to have been worth $675m in 2018 and on track to grow to over $758m in 2019….”

Increasing open access publications serves publishers’ commercial interests

Publishing for free is great, but when journals start charging researchers fees, they don’t lose business. A new journal might introduce a fee after a free introductory period. For example, when eLife introduced a US$2,500 publication fee in 2017, it still published more articles in 2017 and 2018 than it had in 2016. Similarly, Royal Society Open Scienceintroduced a US$1,260 fee in 2018 and continued to grow….

I then looked at the four biggest commercial open-access publishers that relied on publication fees: BMC, Frontiers, MDPI and Hindawi. I tracked 319 of their journals, their listed prices and the number of research articles they published between 2012 and 2018. I fed this data into a statistical model and it showed academics preferred to publish in more expensive journals.

The two publishers who raised their prices the most, Frontiers and MDPI, also saw the most growth in the average number of articles in each journal….”

Open access and Plan S: how Wellcome is tackling four key concerns | Wellcome

“What if high-quality journals don’t offer compliant routes – will they be off limits? …

Won’t researchers’ careers be disadvantaged, particularly early career researchers? …

Will international collaborations be threatened? …

Will learned societies be threatened by the loss of publication revenues? …”

Opinion: “Plan S” falls short for society publishers—and for the researchers they serve | PNAS

“Although implementation guidance was released in November, many details are still unclear. It’s difficult to discern which journals and platforms will be considered compliant. (Conversely, some details of the plan seem mired in minutiae…)….

What does seem clear, at least in their implementation guidelines, is that Plan S will not permit publication in hybrid journals (a dominant model for society publishers) unless they meet one of two conditions: (i) The accepted manuscript is made available in a compliant repository at the time of publication without embargo with a Creative Commons Attribution license (CC BY) or equivalent (which permits both commercial and derivative reuse) (5). (ii) The article is published OA with a CC BY license in a subscription journal that has “transformative agreements,” which achieve compliance through agreements such as “Read and Publish” (6) during the no-more-than-3-year period before the journal must “flip” to full OA. With such restrictions, publishing in most hybrid society journals will likely be prohibited for authors with Plan S funders, even if their coauthors have other funding. As for PNAS, the journal allows authors to deposit in PubMed Central on publication with no embargo but only if the authors have paid the regular article charge and the OA CC BY surcharge, a funding arrangement that would not be allowed under Plan S. The uncertainty of how this change will affect authors and the journal are indeed part of the problem….

I also worry that a less diverse ecosystem of publishing models will be detrimental for researchers. Some journals are more selective than others and thus have higher publication fees because they process and review many papers compared with the number for which they collect fees. Authors willing to pay a higher fee if their papers are accepted by a more selective journal have that choice….”


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….”


Open Access Journal Market research study reveals hidden insights and dynamic, which in turn helps the players in the ecosystem take better strategic decisions – Latest Industry News

Only a sample is available without charge, and one must turn over personal details to get it.

“The ongoing market trends of Open Access Journal market and the key factors impacting the growth prospects are elucidated. With increase in the trend, the factors affecting the trend are mentioned with perfect reasons. Top manufactures, price, revenue, market share are explained to give a depth of idea on the competitive side.”

Will Europe Lead a Global Flip to Open Access? – The Scholarly Kitchen

“From a distance, you might think that journal publishers should be celebrating their success in Europe. They are being offered the open access (OA) crown, locking in OA contracts and article flows. But, European policy targets are adding complexity. The emergent problem is straightforward: there appears to be no realistic path forward that achieves the 2020 OA targets without resulting in substantial revenue reductions for existing publishers. Will Europe miss its OA target? Or will publishers miss their revenue targets?…”

Alternative Funding Mechanisms for APC-free Open Access Journals: results of the first call : OpenAIRE blog

“In 2016, within the FP7 Post-Grant Open Access Pilot, a sub-project focused on Alternative Funding Mechanisms for APC-free Open Access Journals was launched. Approximately one year later, we would like to share the main results of this workline with the public – as we believe these findings can be of interest for other initiatives and publishing platforms.”

Journals Transitioning to Open Access May Have Limited Sustainability Absent Revenue Streams | Open Science

“As the editors of the Journal of Algebraic Combinatorics have announced the termination of their contracts to Springer, the publisher behind the journal, in June 2017, it has been a move coordinated with the journal’s editorial board, to establish a rival Open Access journal Algebraic Combinatorics. The declared impetus for this transition to Open Access has been the importance of fairly priced Open Access options for the scientific community, in accordance with which the prospective journal plans to refrain from high Article Processing Charges (APCs) and profit-driven practices of the fee-based journal publisher, especially given that academic journals rely significantly on the volunteer labor of the scientific community.”