Introducing Open Peer Review at JNeurosci | Journal of Neuroscience

“In our open peer review model, we will publish the editorial decision letters, reviews (in anonymized form), and the authors’ responses to the critiques along with the article. That is, we will disclose the entire process that led to the publication of an article, including the contributions of editors, reviewers, and authors. Please note that we will honor and maintain the confidential nature of the process by keeping the anonymity of our reviewers (if they do not indicate otherwise by signing their reviews).

We understand that not everyone in our community may embrace our open peer review model from the get-go. In our version of the model, we will give both authors and reviewers the ability to opt out. Authors will be asked whether their rebuttal can be published only at the initial manuscript submission stage; reviewers can opt out of sharing their anonymous review when submitting initial comments about a paper. That way, we hope to minimize biases that may result from possible outcomes of the peer review process. Tracking the opt out choice will also be a valuable measure of how our community is reacting to the new open peer review at JNeurosci….”

A new era of Open Access for the Journal of Infection – Journal of Infection

“January 2024 is a watershed moment for the British Infection Association (BIA) and the Journal of Infection, a title which is owned by the BIA and published by Elsevier. Since its inception in 1979, the Journal has been a subscription journal, with income mostly derived from institutional and personal subscriptions. Any profits in the form of royalties have been used by the Association for academic activities, including educational grants, research grants, and meetings. The advantage of the subscription model has been a reliable income supporting the production of the Journal. The downside, shared by all subscription journals, is the paywall, which requires readers to pay for access if they or their institution do not subscribe. Not only is this inequitable, but it also diminishes the dissemination of authors’ work. Furthermore, it is a paradox that most of the work that is published is ultimately funded by the general public via taxation and the general economy but is restricted from universal consumption and impact—why shouldn’t everyone have direct and immediate access to work done on their behalf, and funded by them? In this context, we are delighted that the Journal of Infection this month will flip from subscription to open access.”

How many learned societies publish Diamond Open Access journals? – Ross Mounce

“To seek an answer to the question posed in the title, I sought out reliable data on open access journals. My first port of call was the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ). Although DOAJ certainly isn’t a complete listing of open access journals, as is well documented in ‘The OA Diamond Journals Study‘ (2021), it will at least help provide a minimum bound answer to the question….

After casting the net wide for societies and associations, I ended up finding over 1600 journals which both charge authors and readers no fees (diamond) AND are associated with a learned society. For transparency, I have uploaded this list of society associated, diamond open access journals to github here. Edits, additions, and corrections to this dataset are very welcome….” » Scholarly societies: like a cat chasing the laser dot

“ou may have seen a neutered version of this post over at the LSE blog. This post below, however, puts the tiger in the tank, as it was enhanced by CatGPT:

Maybe scholarly societies have taken “the instruction”follow the money!” a tad too literally? There now are societies that make 83% of their nearly US$ 700 million in revenue from publishing (American Chemical Society). Or 88% of US$130 million (American Psychological Association). Or 91% of US$5 million (Biochemical Society). In essence, societies like these (there are hundreds, especially in STEM fields) are publishers first and societies second (or fifth). One could be forgiven if one imagined their business meetings involved chanting, “Publish or Perish” while stacking green taller than a Himalayan cat tower. But wait, there’s more! Some of these organizations even side with corporate publishers against scholarship, e.g., when litigating against organizations or individuals striving to make research more accessible, or when begging wannabe-authoritarian rulers to protect their archaic, parasitic business models. Can it still be considered ethical to charge multiples of the publication costs of an article in order to finance executive salaries, subsidize member dues, sponsor prizes, host all-you-can-drink receptions at annual meetings or pay lawyers to ensure nobody can read the works of your scholars? Who needs scholarly integrity when you can have lucrative deals and lawyers on speed dial?…

So, to the scholarly societies out there, here’s a challenge: step up, embrace Mastodon (and any of the other cool fediverse options like peertube, owncast, writefreely, hubzilla, etc.), and give those faux-societies a run for their money. Show us you’re all about scholarship, not just financial catnip!”

The fediverse is an opportunity learned societies can’t ignore | Impact of Social Sciences

“Just as social media has become ubiquitous in academia, its established formats and dynamics have been brought into doubt. Björn Brembs argues that learned societies concerned with their core mission as societies should engage and lead developments on federated social media platforms, such as Mastodon.”

Q&A: Phillip Sharp and Amy Brand on the future of open-access publishing | MIT News | Massachusetts Institute of Technology

“A group of MIT scholars is releasing a new white paper about academic open-access publishing. The paper gathers information, identifies outstanding questions, and calls for further research and data to inform policy on the subject.


The group was chaired by Institute Professor Emeritus Phillip A. Sharp, of the Department of Biology and Koch Institute of Integrative Cancer Research, who co-authored the report along with William B. Bonvillian, senior director of special projects at MIT Open Learning; Robert Desimone, director of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research; Barbara Imperiali, the Class of 1922 Professor of Biology; David R. Karger, professor of electrical engineering; Clapperton Chakanetsa Mavhunga, professor of science, technology, and society; Amy Brand, director and publisher of the MIT Press; Nick Lindsay, director for journals and open access at MIT Press; and Michael Stebbins of Science Advisors, LLC.


MIT News spoke with Sharp and Brand about the state of open-access publishing….”

Access to Science and Scholarship: Key Questions about the Future of Research Publishing

“The health of the research enterprise is closely tied to the effectiveness of the scientific and scholarly publishing ecosystem. Policy-, technology-, and market-driven changes in publishing models over the last two decades have triggered a number of disruptions within this ecosystem:

Ongoing increases in the cost of journal publishing, with dominant open access models shifting costs from subscribers to authors

Significant consolidation and vertical (supply chain) integration in the publishing industry, and a decline in society-owned subscription journals that have long subsidized scientific and scholarly societies

A dramatic increase in the number of “predatory” journals with substandard peer review

Decline in the purchasing power of academic libraries relative to the quantity and cost of published research To illustrate how researcher behavior, funder policies, and publisher business models and incentives interact, this report presents an historical overview of open access publishing.

The report also provides a list of key questions for further investigation to understand, measure, and best prepare for the impact of new policies related to open access in research publishing, categorized into six general areas: access and business models, research data, preprint publishing, peer review, costs to researchers and universities, and infrastructure.”

IPLC Response to the Article Development Charge Proposed by the American Chemical Society – Ivy Plus Libraries

“The 13 Ivy Plus libraries are both surprised by and united in opposition to the zero embargo option announced by the American Chemical Society (ACS) on 21 September 2023. This unexpected new charge is a clear challenge to both authors’ rights and the developing scholarly communications ecosystem. According to this policy, an Article Development Charge (ADC) of $2,500 would be charged to authors who seek to retain and exercise the right to deposit a pre-publication version of their article in an open repository once their manuscript enters the ACS peer review process….”

The Biochemical Society and the Big Ten Academic Alliance sign Read & Publish agreement in support of open access

“The Biochemical Society and the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA) are delighted to announce a Read & Publish agreement that supports the open sharing of research and knowledge from across the molecular biosciences.

The agreement guarantees uncapped, fee-free open access (OA) publishing for corresponding authors at participating institutions, alongside full read access to all Biochemical Society journals (published by the Society’s publishing arm, Portland Press).  

With this agreement, thirteen BTAA institutions across the United States join more than 200 others around the world already taking advantage of Read & Publish benefits. The agreement covers over 50 campuses, supporting hassle-free OA for US-based authors publishing across all areas of molecular bioscience….”

Biochemical Society launches innovative Subscribe to Open model for its journals

“The Biochemical Society (and its trading arm, Portland Press Ltd) is delighted to announce the launch of Subscribe to Open (S2O) for five of its world-leading research and review journals. This move marks another significant step in the Society’s commitment to making research accessible while maintaining the highest standards of quality….”

Open access: evolution not revolution | The Annals of The Royal College of Surgeons of England

“Thus, following discussion and vote of the editorial board, the [The Annals of The Royal College of Surgeons of England] will become a fully gold open access journal from January 2024….

Why should the Annals change to gold OA?

• Over half of academic journal publishers currently report decreasing institutional subscriptions and the Annals reflects this trend.1

• There has been an exponential increase in OA with 60% of journal publishers reporting increased demand from authors, and 36% reporting OA downloads outperforming subscription content.1

• Research funders (including Wellcome Trust and UKRI) and many universities now stipulate OA deposit of accepted manuscripts in their institutional repositories.

• OA publishing is compliant with Plan S, supported by cOAlition S, which requires research funded by public grants to be published in OA journals or platforms….


The APC is fully waived for accepted manuscripts where the lead or senior author is a current fellow, member or affiliate of RCS England. Of note, annual membership fees are lower than the APC for one publication….”

After the “Nelson Memo”: Key Considerations for Delivering on the Promise of Open & Equitable Scholarship

“This resource details practical steps that individuals and organizations can take to ensure that the emerging open-centric research ecosystem is optimized for equity, inclusivity, efficiency. replicability, transparency, trust, and engagement. It provides guidance to colleges and universities, public and private funders, professional societies, and others for aligning their processes and their incentive structures with open scholarship values. Additionally, It highlights a range of organizations that are exhibiting good practices in the field.”

Open access to journal articles of the American Society of Criminology: A little study to illustrate concepts and costs · CrimRxiv

There can be 100% open access (OA) to criminology articles. It’d increase criminology’s scientificity and impact. Anything less is a social injustice. To advance open criminology, the American Society of Criminology’s (ASC) Scientific Integrity Committee hosted the Green Open Access Webinar. The advertisement makes a bold proclamation: “ALL journal articles can be made open access for FREE… yes, 100% FREE.” Is the proclamation true? Now? Legally? How? Who has the power? I answer these questions in this Pub. I conclude with thoughts on how to allocate scarce resources for the greatest good. ROI matters because we can’t support everything; we need to choose. Money spent on gold OA could have better ROI if invested in the systematic provision of green OA. Instead of pay publishers APCs, pay the money directly to authors, editors, learned-societies, and others who can multiply the quantity and quality of OA by emphasizing what’s green over gold. 

If you’d like to disagree with me, correct me, or whatever, please do! Among other ways, you can “Post a discussion” at the Pub’s end or in-line. You’re also welcome to engage me on Twitter/X at @SJacques83. (I don’t have a Mastadon or Bluesky account yet, sorry; but it’s on my to-do list.)

Project MUSE Accelerates Move to Open Access with Publisher S2O Commitments

“Leading humanities and social sciences platform Project MUSE announces that many of our university press and related scholarly publisher partners have already committed to participate in the launch of our Subscribe to Open (S2O) program for journals in 2025. Fifty journals from more than 20 publishers are confirmed for participation to date, with more expected to join before the end of the year.

S2O is an equitable and sustainable model that enables journals to open access to their current content without Article Processing Charges (APCs). MUSE’s S2O program is built around our familiar and trusted Journal Collections, making the transition from conventional subscriptions to support for open access seamless for libraries, while providing revenue stability for nonprofit publishers….”