UK universities ‘paid big publishers £1 billion’ in past decade | Times Higher Education (THE)

“UK negotiators have vowed to strike “cost-effective and sustainable” deals with big publishers, as figures reveal that subscriptions to academic journals and other publishing charges are likely to have cost UK universities more than £1 billion over the past decade.

Data obtained using Freedom of Information requests show that UK universities paid some £950.6 million to the world’s 10 biggest publishing houses between 2010 and 2019. For the sector as a whole, however, the overall bill is likely to have topped £1 billion as one in five universities, including several Russell Group institutions, failed to provide cost information.

More than 90 per cent of this outlay was spent with five companies: Elsevier, Wiley, Springer Nature, Taylor & Francis and Sage, with Elsevier claiming £394 million over the 10-year period, roughly 41 per cent of monies received by big publishers….”

UK universities ‘paid big publishers £1 billion’ in past decade | Times Higher Education (THE)

“UK negotiators have vowed to strike “cost-effective and sustainable” deals with big publishers, as figures reveal that subscriptions to academic journals and other publishing charges are likely to have cost UK universities more than £1 billion over the past decade.

Data obtained using Freedom of Information requests show that UK universities paid some £950.6 million to the world’s 10 biggest publishing houses between 2010 and 2019. For the sector as a whole, however, the overall bill is likely to have topped £1 billion as one in five universities, including several Russell Group institutions, failed to provide cost information.

More than 90 per cent of this outlay was spent with five companies: Elsevier, Wiley, Springer Nature, Taylor & Francis and Sage, with Elsevier claiming £394 million over the 10-year period, roughly 41 per cent of monies received by big publishers….”

Project Announcement: Cancelling the Big Deal | Ithaka S+R

“As Big Deal spending has come to occupy a greater and greater share of materials budgets, libraries are increasingly questioning the status quo of their Big Deal subscriptions. Recent years have seen a number of prominent cancellations, precipitated by questions about the value of the subscription materials. In 2020 we expect this trend to continue with libraries becoming increasingly assertive in their negotiating stance with publishers. This may yield some interesting compromise agreements, but it potentially will lead to more libraries cancelling Big Deals. This brings up a range of questions about how users can continue to access scholarly materials in this rapidly shifting resource landscape. 

In May 2020 Ithaka S+R will launch a study in collaboration with a cohort of libraries to explore the impact of Big Deal cancellations on users, strategies for accessing content, and perceptions of the library’s role in providing access. In this post we share the project’s goals, the preliminary roster of library partners, and how additional libraries–perhaps yours!–can get involved….”

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….”

ACM’s New Open Access Agreements: A Q&A with Scott Delman – The Scholarly Kitchen

“As many Scholarly Kitchen readers will know, in late January it was announced that the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) had signed new open access (OA) publishing agreements with four major US universities. There has been lots of public conversation about these agreements, but I decided to go to the source for some additional information. Scott Delman of ACM graciously agreed to respond to some questions….”

Establishing tender procedures and competition within the framework of national library consortia for open access journals | National Contact Point Open Access OA2020-DE

“The open access transformation is a declared goal of the Coalition S and the OA2020 initiative and the institutions supporting them. In order to achieve a large-scale open access transformation of journals, as many established subscription journals as possible shall be transformed into open access. To achieve this goal, transformative agreements are concluded such as those the DEAL project has been negotiating for several years with the three major international scientific publishers (Elsevier, Springer Nature and Wiley). In Germany, the 13+ group established by the “Alliance of Science Organisations” Working Group “Scientific Publication System” is aiming at similar negotiations with further thirteen large publishing houses. In addition, the DFG programme “Open Access Transformation Agreements” provides funding for transformative agreements.

The existing transformative agreements do not include mechanisms for the definitive flipping of journals into open access and no mechanisms to limit cost increases in the long term, as demanded by the European Commission and the European University Association, for example. Indeed, APC-based, genuine open access journals also lack mechanisms for the long-term limitation of cost increases. The price caps currently implemented in the (DFG-funded) publication funds are of limited suitability. On the one hand, they are too high for the mass of open access journals; on the other hand, they are set too low for highly selective and high-quality open access journals that are attractive to many researchers.

Against this background, we suggest to conclude pure open access contracts and, if applicable, contract components for pure open access journals within the framework of transformative agreements by tendering in secret bidding procedures as practiced by SCOAP³. The now published concept describes the intended objectives, the services to be put out to tender and a proposal for organisational implementation.

The following points summarise the objectives of the concept:

Establishing price and service competition between publishers by means of centralised tendering.
Reduction of the average article costs for consortia within the framework of open access contracts to the level of SCOAP³.
Clear definition of the services to be provided by the publishers.
Structural anchoring of APC funding for affiliated scientists….”

California to resume Elsevier talks after signing deals elsewhere | Times Higher Education (THE)

“After watching the University of California head toward a series of open access agreements with other big publishers, industry titan Elsevier has agreed to resume exploratory discussions with the unbending state system….

Given the open access deals the California system has signed elsewhere, the system’s library leaders said in a statement, “we are hopeful that this suggests that the publisher is ready to discuss deals that align with UC’s goals”….

California also pursued its agenda with other publishers. That has led to agreements featuring open-access terms with publishing entities that include Cambridge University Press, the Association for Computing Machinery and JMIR Publications.

And UC said that two other major publishers, Wiley and Springer Nature, have now agreed to extend California’s access to their journals – despite their contracts expiring at the end of last year….”

 

After talks with Elsevier stalled, the University of California has been working to advance open access. Here’s how. | UC Berkeley Library News

“UC is in negotiations with Wiley and Springer Nature to renew contracts that expired on Dec. 31. In each case, UC and the publisher have a shared desire to reach a transformative agreement that combines UC’s subscription with open access publishing of UC research. Both publishers have extended UC’s access to their journals, under the terms of their previous contracts, while negotiations are underway….”

The NERL Executive Board Approves Support for the MIT Framework for Publisher Contracts

“The Executive Board of the NERL Consortium (The Board) approved support for the MIT Framework for Publisher Contracts. At the forefront of this framework is the belief that authors should retain copyright with generous reuse rights and the ability to immediately place scholarly articles in institutional repositories.

The NERL Board strongly supports the open and equitable dissemination of scholarly research output and believes that this framework is a pivotal step in this direction….”