Let it flow: COVID-19 pandemic underscores need to share research; but how will it work

“In a way, options such as Plan S and the nation-wide subscription policy [proposed in India] worsen inequal ities between scholars from developing and developed countries and between researchers from rich and poor universities. Clearly, better models are needed to ensure open access to research.”


ESC Publications Committee: scope, successes, and challenges 2009–20 | Cardiovascular Research | Oxford Academic

“Currently, all ESC journals are publishing with a subscription model (except ESC Heart Failure and soon EHJ Digital Health), whereby readers or their institution pay, while submitting is free. The editors label 1–2 papers of each issue as Editor’s Choice which are freely accessible, while the remaining papers become open only after 12?months. The hybrid model has the big advantage that it provides funding to run large editorial offices, as required for high impact journals. Of note, editorial services, statistical reviewing, illustrations, as well as news sections require resources. Not the least, subscription provides income for educational societies such as the ESC and many others a service for their members.

Recently, the Welcome Trust, and the European Union, presented Plan S to make open access mandatory for all journals. Plan S would change the business model of publishing completely. Under this regimen, the authors have to pay, while for readers access is free. While open access provides immediate access, also hybrid journal such as the EHJ get 12 million downloads per year (Figure 1B). A disadvantage of open access is the huge manuscript handling fees required for high impact journals which would be a burden for authors from less affluent economies. Therefore, the ESC PubComm took the stand that hybrid journals should continue to be allowed. Also, few open access journals have reached acceptable impact factors. Whether or not Plan S will be able to change publishing remains to be seen. To that end, the decision of US journals and of the National Institute of Health will be essential….”

cOAlition S welcomes AAAS decision to support the sharing of author accepted manuscripts | Plan S

“cOAlition S – an international consortium of research funding and performing organisations committed to making full and immediate Open Access a reality – welcomes the decision by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) to update their publishing agreements.

As stated in today’s press release by AAAS, researchers working under a Plan S Open Access policy can make their Author Accepted Manuscripts (AAMs) freely available through an OA repository, at the time of publication and under a CC BY (or CC BY-ND) licence….”

Science family of journals announces change to open-access policy

In a step towards open access, the publisher of Science will start allowing some authors publishing in its high-profile subscription journals to share their accepted manuscripts openly online under liberal terms that mean anyone could reproduce or redistribute the work.

Science journals to offer select authors open-access publishing for free | Science | AAAS

AAAS, which publishes the Science family of journals, announced today it will offer its authors a free way to comply with a mandate issued by some funders that publications resulting from research they fund be immediately free to read. Under the new open-access policy, authors may deposit near-final, peer-reviewed versions of papers accepted by paywalled Science titles in publicly accessible online repositories.

Society Publishers Accelerating Open access and Plan S (SPA-OPS) project

“This collection contains the key outputs from the Society Publishers Accelerating Open access and Plan S (SPA-OPS) project. This project set out to identify routes through which learned society publishers could successfully transition to open access (OA) and align with Plan S.

This project was led by Alicia Wise and Lorraine Estelle of Information Power, and was commissioned by Wellcome, UK Research and Innovation, and the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers (ALPSP)….”

Initiating a transformative agreement as a small scholarly society: Interview with Gaynor Redvers-Mutton

“Prior to Plan S, many scholarly publishers yet to test out Open Access journal models had begun considering possible approaches, but few guessed they’d be transitioning to OA so quickly. Now, publishers that wish to comply with the initiative to make research funded by cOAlition S members fully and immediately OA, which went into effect on the 1st of January, have been feeling the crunch to condense the kinds of strategic journal program decisions they might have planned over the course of a few years into as little as a few months.

The Microbiology Society was one of the first small publishers to take the plunge to commit to a transition plan from subscription to OA publishing in response to Plan S. As part of the “Society Publishers Accelerating Open Access and Plan S“ (SPA-OPS) project, the society opted to take a Transformative Agreement (TA) Plan S route, one which few small publishers had previously tested. The society managed to develop an institutional set-price Publish and Read (P&R) package from ideation to execution in less than a year. The first P&R TA was a pilot that the society has built upon in subsequent institutional negotiations. The publishing team plans to assess the outcomes of its current transition efforts before deciding on future OA business development steps.

In the interview below, The Microbiology Society’s Head of Business Development & Sales, Gaynor Redvers-Mutton, discusses the rapid approach the society publishing team took to releasing a working TA and how they are thinking about the next phase of their OA publishing program….”

“It’s hard to explain why this is taking so long” – scilog

When it comes into force at the beginning of 2021, the Open Access initiative “Plan S” is poised to help opening up and improving academic publishing. Ulrich Pöschl, a chemist and Open Access advocate of the first hour, explains why free access to research results is important and how an up-to-date academic publishing system can work.