The Consortium for a Transparent Transition to Open Access (TTOA): A cost-transparent combination of old and new

“The TTOA Consortium is an initiative of the Fair Open Access Alliance ( and includes ‘native’ open access publishers, traditional subscription-based publishers, and open access publishers that do not charge authors: PLOS, MDPI, De Gruyter, Open Edition, Copernicus Publications, Ubiquity Press, Brill, and OLH. In addition to these publishers, the following organizations are collaborating partners: CWTS (Leiden University), QOAM, MPDL….

The TTOA [Transparent Transition to Open Access] Consortium has instead developed a different approach to manage the transition to open access, while embracing all the final features specified in the ORE Call for Tender….

The submission portal, archive, and publication platform would be financed by research funding organisations, while the peer-review and quality control are carried out by the journals of participating publishers. This infrastructure should be built from open-source software, operate under open standards, and be owned or hosted by non-profit organizations…..”

Europe’s open-access drive escalates as university stand-offs spread

“Sweden is latest country to hold out on journal subscriptions, while negotiators share tactics to broker new deals with publishers.

Bold efforts to push academic publishing towards an open-access model are gaining steam. Negotiators from libraries and university consortia across Europe are sharing tactics on how to broker new kinds of contracts that could see more articles appear outside paywalls. And inspired by the results of a stand-off in Germany, they increasingly declare that if they don’t like what publishers offer, they will refuse to pay for journal access at all. On 16 May, a Swedish consortium became the latest to say that it wouldn’t renew its contract, with publishing giant Elsevier. Under the new contracts, termed ‘read and publish’ deals, libraries still pay subscriptions for access to paywalled articles, but their researchers can also publish under open-access terms so that anyone can read their work for free. Advocates say such agreements could accelerate the progress of the open-access movement. Despite decades of campaigning for research papers to be published openly — on the grounds that the fruits of publicly funded research should be available for all to read — scholarly publishing’s dominant business model remains to publish articles behind paywalls and collect subscriptions from libraries (see ‘Growth of open access’). But if many large library consortia strike read-and-publish deals, the proportion of open-access articles could surge….”

Guest Post: From Supermarkets to Marketplaces – The Evolution of the Open Access Ecosystem – The Scholarly Kitchen

“Editor’s Note: Today’s post is by Sven Fund. Sven is the Managing Director of Knowledge Unlatched and founder of fullstopp, a digital consulting agency serving publishers, libraries, and intermediaries. From 2008 to 2015, Sven was the CEO of Berlin-based publisher De Gruyter. Prior to that he served in different functions from Managing Director to Executive Board member at what is now Springer Nature. He is a lecturer at Humboldt University in Berlin.

Open access (OA) is undergoing yet another metamorphosis. So far, the space has been dominated by author-pays (via Article Processing Charges – APCs) models, both hybrid and “pure”. And while funders like Wellcome and the German Research Foundation are reviewing their policies – many of them a decade old by now – it is becoming ever clearer that APCs will not be the future of OA, at least not uniquely. With their normative approach of flipping traditional acquisition budgets, Ralf Schimmer, Kai Geschuhn and Andreas Vogler have been advocating in principle that which is now becoming reality: i.e. that in order to really shake up the academic publishing market, other transactional models are necessary….

To make OA really work, libraries have to cooperate and co-spend in order to shift the market-shaping from publishers to themselves. Publishers are structured like supermarkets: They operate as global consortia around their own products, generating demand, shouldering financial risk and investments and in the process generating profit. As long as libraries or other agents are not prepared to supersede this role with a better structure, the underlying problem will remain….”

Innovating for Impact: The Next Evolution of Library Consortia

“One of the most common approaches is centralized consortium support or management for member library digital repository platforms, which allows institutions to showcase and disseminate student and faculty scholarly and creative works. A precursor to the broader scope of current institutional repositories is seen in shared digital collections of theses and dissertations (ETDs), with OhioLINK’s ETD Center (created in 2001) one of the best examples of a library consortium-supported ETD repository. Other regional consortia or state university systems (e.g., Texas Digital Library, California Digital Library) support similar shared ETD repositories. Most consortia-supported digital repositories now focus on creating institutionallybranded portals (rather than shared collections) that include faculty publications, student scholarship, and other unique and locally-created or curated content. Digital repositories are supported by different types of academic library consortia and library systems. For example, the California State University (CSU) system’s Digital Library Services offers centrally-supported repository services called ScholarWorks to all CSU libraries, while the British Columbia Electronic Library Network (BCELN)–a consortium that includes members ranging from small technical colleges to large research universities–provides a shared repository platform that offers individually branded portals and federated search across all member repositories. Both CSU and BCELN use open source platforms (CSU is currently migrating to Samvera/Hyrax, while BCELN uses Islandora), leveraging shared, centralized support to configure and manage software that would not necessarily be feasible (or desirable) for individual members to maintain on their own. The growth in academic library engagement with open access publishing is also driving interest in consortia support and management of platforms that facilitate formal publishing processes beyond the simple dissemination of a repository or digital asset system….”


“While such [OA] policy directives are essential to advancing open access, so too is an infrastructure that can support a publishing landscape steadily migrating to a state where “Open” is the default.

Many key services that now comprise the existing infrastructure, which has evolved over time, are non-commercial and far from financially secure. Some could even be described as “at risk”.

Being that many of these services are now fundamental to implementing Open Access and Open Science policies and supporting these workflows, securing them has become a growing concern of the broader OA and OS community.

The formation of the Global Sustainability Coalition for Open Science Services (SCOSS) represents a community-led effort to help maintain, and ultimately secure, vital infrastructure….

The Global Sustainability Coalition for Open Science Services (SCOSS) is a network of influential organisations committed to helping secure OA and OS infrastructure well into the future. Officially formed in early 2017, SCOSS’ purpose is to provide a new co-ordinated cost-sharing framework that will ultimately enable the broader OA and OS community to support the non-commercial services on which it depends.

SCOSS will function primarily to help identify and track, via a registry, non-commercial services essential to Open Science, and to make qualified recommendations on which of these services should be considered for funding support….”

Affordable prices and open access essential: UNIFI fully supports goals of FinELib consortium in Elsevier negotiations – Suomen yliopistot UNIFI ry : Suomen yliopistot UNIFI ry

“Universities Finland UNIFI is giving its full support to the FinELib consortium’s goals in the negotiations with the large academic publisher Elsevier. The main goals are to ensure that the academic community has access to Elsevier’s journals at affordable prices and that there is a clear transition towards immediate open access.

The cost of access to Elsevier’s journals (the SD Freedom collection) has grown significantly. UNIFI finds this unconscionable and accordingly demands that the increase in costs must stop.

All publicly funded research should be openly available to everybody. The fees paid by universities for subscriptions must enable open access publishing for Finnish researchers. The total costs of academic publishing must not be allowed to grow.

UNIFI requires that Elsevier reacts to the demands from Finnish universities and offers a solution combining affordable pricing and a transition towards immediate open access.

More on the negotiations: FinELib’s website

Kotilava – Finnish academic journals towards immediate Open Access | Kotilava

“In their joint effort, Kotilava, The Federation of Finnish Learned Societies and The National Library of Finland support Finnish scholarly journals in their transition to immediate Open Access. This project, being a part of the Open Science and Research Initiative in Finland (ATT), proceeds via two subprojects. First, the platform for editing and publishing OA journals are improved. Second, a new consortium based funding model for Finnish OA journals will be created….”