EU council ‘no pay’ publishing model is realistic – Olivier Pourret

“According to Katharine Sanderson, “publishing-industry representatives warn” that May’s EU Council call for a “no pay” academic publishing model is “unrealistic and lack[ing] detail”. However, the proposal is already being implemented via several approaches:…

Many of these are already supported directly by institutions, governments, or private funders, and they are here to stay. 


It is up to us, researchers and policy makers, to make sure we support “no pay” solutions where they exist. Scientific knowledge is a public good, and it should be treated as such.”

(IUCr) 75 years of IUCr Journals: 1948 to 2023, an Editor-in-Chief’s perspective

“The IUCr came into being 75 years ago in 1948 and others will recount the history of its origins as part of these 75th Anniversary celebrations. Also, please see earlier histories of the IUCr (Kamminga, 1989) and of the IUCr journals, especially on their 60th anniversary (Authier, 2009). Right from the start, the IUCr recognized the importance of high-quality publication of crystallographic research and structural data with its own journal, Acta Crystallographica (Acta Cryst.). Acta Cryst. remained the sole IUCr journal for some 20 years, but in 1968, it was expanded into two sections: Acta Cryst. A for crystal physics, diffraction, and theoretical and general crystallography, and Acta Cryst. B for structural crystallography and crystal chemistry. At around this same time (and following a decision made earlier at the 1963 IUCr General Assembly) a new journal was founded: Journal of Applied Crystallography for reporting methods, apparatus, problems and discoveries in applied crystallography. In 1983, Acta Cryst. was further expanded into three sections with the founding of Acta Cryst. C to handle crystal structure communications, and in 1993 it was expanded again with Acta Cryst. D to provide a needed home for the increasing number of biological crystallography submissions. The following year, in October 1994, another new IUCr journal was founded: the Journal of Synchrotron Radiation for submissions across the whole remit of synchrotron science (and later free-electron laser X-ray sources).A key development was the introduction of online journal versions in 1999. Up to this point, both the review process and journal publication, itself, took place almost exclusively in hardcopy form, and this author can just remember (as a new Co-editor in 2002) inheriting a `Not for publication – for review only’ stamp to use on hardcopy submissions received and then sent out to review. Over the following five years or so, the review system became entirely electronic and eventually web-based. A number of other important changes came to the journals in this period, such as the advent of an open-access option for authors in 2004. Partly to take advantage of these changes, two new sections were added to Acta Cryst.: Acta Cryst. E in 2001 to carry structure reports online, and Acta Cryst. F in 2005 for rapid structural biology communications. In 2008, Acta Cryst. E became the first IUCr journal to flip to `open-access only’ while in 2014 all the IUCr journals went to online publication only. Also, coinciding with the United Nations declaration of the International Year of Crystallography in 2014, the IUCr launched a new fully open-access journal, IUCrJ, to attract high-quality cross-cutting papers of broad scientific significance from all areas of structural science and crystallography. IUCrJ now covers seven main subject areas with papers pre-selected by the Main Editors prior to review.Completing the complement of IUCr journals is IUCrData, fully open access from its inception in 2016, at least initially to take data reports formerly submitted to Acta Cryst. E. This was associated with the transformation of Acta Cryst. E from a journal focused on Structure Reports Online to one more focused on Crystallographic Communications. The transformation of Acta Cryst. E was necessitated in part by its removal from the main journal citation index in 2012. Both journals have continued to develop and evolve over the years with a Raw Data Letters section recently started in IUCrData, while Acta Cryst. E has become fully re-i

Put your publication money where your mouth is | Brain Communications | Oxford Academic

“In this editorial, we will try to convince you that publishing in academic-led, community-oriented journals like ours is a better use of your hard-earned grant money than publishing in for-profit journals….

“For the society or charity-owned journals like ours, the surplus funds raised beyond the costs associated with publishing are put back into the scientific community. In our case, The Guarantors of Brain charity uses money raised by Brain and Brain Communications to support fellowships, meetings, and travel grants to attend conferences or to do pro-bono work in low-income countries (see….”

Measuring open access publications: a novel normalized open access indicator

Abstract:  The issue of open access (OA) to scientific publications is attracting growing interest within the scientific community and among policy makers. Open access indicators are being calculated. In its 2019 ranking, the ”Centre for Science and Technology Studies” (CWTS) provides the number and the share of OA publications per institution. This gives an idea of the degree of openness of institutions. However, not taking into account the disciplinary specificities and the specialization of institutions makes comparisons based on the shares of OA publications biased. We show that OA publishing practices vary considerably according to discipline. As a result, we propose two methods to normalize OA share; by WoS subject categories and by disciplines. Normalized Open Access Indicator (NOAI) corrects for disciplinary composition and allows a better comparability of institutions or countries.

Influence of Publication Capacity on Journal Impact Factor for International Open Access Journals from China: Insights from Microeconomic Analysis

Abstract:  The evolving landscape of open access (OA) journal publishing holds significant importance for policymakers and stakeholders who seek to make informed decisions and develop strategies that foster sustainable growth and advancements in open access initiatives within China. This study addressed the shortcomings of the current journal evaluation system and recognized the necessity of researching the elasticity of annual publication capacity (PUB) in relation to the Journal Impact Factor (JIF). By constructing an economic model of elasticity, a comparative analysis of the characteristics and dynamics of international OA journals from China and overseas was conducted. The analysis categorized OA journals based on their respective elasticity values and provided specific recommendations tailored to each category. These recommendations offer valuable insights into the development and growth potential of both OA journals from China and overseas. Moreover, the findings underscore the importance of strategic decision-making to strike a balance between quantity and quality in OA journal management. By comprehending the dynamic nature of elasticity, China can enhance its OA journal landscape, effectively meet the academic demand from domestic researchers, minimize the outflow of OA publications to overseas markets, and fortify its position within the global scholarly community.


DOAJ and Lyrasis Collaborate to Facilitate Library Support for Open Access

“The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) and Lyrasis, two prominent players in the global scholarly communications landscape, are pleased to announce a new partnership that enables libraries to provide crucial financial support to DOAJ. This collaboration underscores the commitment of both organizations to strengthen Open Access and democratize access to scholarly research….”

Interview with Robert ‘Bob’ E. Goodin

“The Open Access beat-up has, inadvertently, been the death knell of quality academic publishing, driving a fatal wedge between the incentives of publishers and those of journal editors. There are various different models that publishers are employing to come to grips with the Open Access world, and each of those models has its own implications for what pressures publishers are incentivized to put on the editors of their journals.

Abstracting from particularities, one fact seems to dominate almost all of those approaches, directly or indirectly. That fact is just this. The profits of commercial publishers are increasingly a function of ridiculously large Open Access fees, whether paid by the author, the grant-giver or (nowadays most typically) the author’s home institution or national government through ‘Read and Publish Transformative Agreements’. The way to maximize those profits is to maximize the number of articles a journal publishes – and to do so without regard to quality. (As I have said, given bundling and consortia, no library can unsubscribe to an individual journal of diminishing quality anyway, so a journal’s quality is no longer a commercial concern to publishers seeking to maximize profits.)…”

Academic publishing system is extorting emerging researchers

“In an era of digitisation, one should be asking: why are researchers still burdened with exorbitant publication fees? Especially when considering neither the submitting scientists nor reviewing experts receive payment for their hard work. Unfortunately, the answer seems to lie somewhere between profiteering and extortion.

The justification for these high fees remains a subject of debate. While open-access journals argue that the charges are necessary to ensure sustainability and cover the expenses involved in the publication process (such as editing, formatting and online hosting), critics question whether the current fee structures are reasonable and transparent.

The lack of transparency in understanding how these costs are allocated and the absence of standardised pricing across journals raises some serious concerns and has even led to boycotting by some of the world’s leading scientists.

It is widely recognised that a high journal impact factor doesn’t guarantee quality, and the obsession with publishing in what are considered “glamour mags” in certain scientific fields is harmful and ethically compromising. Unfortunately, the reality of this unfair system of “pay and publish or perish”, creates an extremely unlevel playing field for researchers from emerging countries….”

Shaping the future with Researcher-run Journals – Open Collective

“Please join us for a 3-hr workshop covering startup and longevity planning for researcher-run Diamond Open Access journals.   The workshop will cover Diamond OA basics and the state of Earth Sciences publishing as well as “under the hood” details of community building, media and branding strategies, building for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in science publishing, and Open data/code principles applied to journal design.  Participants can expect a crash course in journal-building and will be invited to contribute to a future-looking white paper representing how we, the global research community, would like to see funding agencies support Open Access. There is no fee to participate.  Refreshments provided. Limited to 50 participants.”

Improving Student Journal Visibility via the Directory of Open Access Journals | Current Issues in Education

Abstract:  In this interview with Judith Barnsby, Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), we look at how student-run journals could enhance their visibility by joining DOAJ. We highlight the general and student journal-specific application requirements for inclusion in DOAJ, known challenges with the application process, and recommendations for student journals that want to apply. The interview is conducted by Mariya Maistrovskaya, University of Toronto Libraries, the Interviewer.


OSF Preprints | Readworthy open-access journals for environmental studies

Abstract:  Accomplishing the sustainable development goal is challenging and requires the joint effort of the whole community, especially when humans are approaching the climate tipping point [1]. To contribute to promoting sustainable development, the AISDL Team has aggregated reliable and open-access scientific journals about environmental issues here as sources of knowledge for any interested researchers.

Health Policy and Planning’s transition to Open Access: moving into the future | Health Policy and Planning | Oxford Academic

“From 2024, Health Policy and Planning (HPP) will become a fully Open Access journal, in line with the overall trend in the publishing landscape.

A few decades ago, almost all journals were based on subscriptions, paid by libraries, universities and research institutes. More recently, we have seen strong growth in Open Access journals, where the cost of publishing is covered by authors, their funders or employing organizations.

At HPP, we have demonstrated our commitment to transitioning to a fully Open Access journal by gradually increasing our Open Access content in line with growth targets set by cOAlition S. This final step completes our transformative commitment to Open Access.

This change has no impact on the journal’s editorial policy, standards or processes.”


“Concordia should: ? Broaden the university’s senate resolution on open access (dated to 2010) and update it to reflect the current state of open science and the need for widespread departmental and researcher buy-in. ? Continue to support foundational initiatives, like the Open Science @Concordia conference (inaugurally held in May 2022) and the Concordia Open Science Working Group led by Drs. Byers-Heinlein and Alessandroni, alongside library-hosted Open Access Week and Open Education Week events and services, which are crucial milestones along this pathway. These are key to creating awareness of the benefits of adopting open science practices, both broadly and in discipline-specific ways. ? Further the development of copyright support through an institutionally supported rights retention strategy, which can support green open access and diversify how research can be made openly accessible. ? Promote public outreach by creating (and enhancing existing) training programs in popular science writing for faculty and students using local expertise from the Department of Journalism, the Department of Communication Studies, and the Library. ? Strengthen ties with other institutions and organizations to secure long-term funding and resources for the implementation of open science. ? Position principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion at the core of open science practices, including designing, generating, and publishing science. ? Promote open education at Concordia, for example by highlighting in course calendars which courses use open materials, open software, and renewable assignments….”

Recommendations for Fostering Open Science at Concordia University – Spectrum: Concordia University Research Repository

Abstract:  Open science—and open scholarship more broadly—is revolutionizing how research is conducted by democratizing access to knowledge and bringing inclusion and transparency to the forefront. By making research processes and products open and accessible to all, open science promotes fairness, efficiency, and accountability in the scholarly enterprise and ensures that the benefits of scientific and humanistic progress are shared with all segments of society.

In Canada, fostering the practical implementation of open science practices (e.g., open access, open educational resources, open data, open labs, open notebooks, open evaluation, open hardware, open-source software, and citizen science) is rapidly becoming a top priority. The Government of Canada’s Roadmap for Open Science envisions a complete transition to an “open by design and by default” model by 2025. This transition is underway, with policies being promoted by federal and provincial funding agencies. For example, the federal funding agencies, also known as the Tri-Council, have enacted an open-access policy requiring grant recipients to ensure that publications funded by the agencies are freely accessible within 12 months of publication. This can be achieved by depositing peer-reviewed manuscripts in institutional or disciplinary repositories or publishing them in open-access journals. Departing from the Tri-Agency model and aligning with Plan S, the Fonds de Recherche du Québec (FRQ) updated its Open-Access Policy in 2022, requiring that articles and theses be made freely available under an open license upon publication or institutional deposit. The fast-approaching date of 2025, in combination with new mandates and policies, will require institutional support and advocacy to achieve effective solutions.

On May 27, 2022, Concordia University took a decisive step towards advancing open science by hosting the Open Science @Concordia conference, which brought together a diverse group of open science advocates and stakeholders from Concordia University and other institutions. The conference included keynote talks by national and international speakers, interdisciplinary lightning-talk sessions, and roundtables. Ten national and international speakers presented on topics like open access, open data, open infrastructures, open educational resources, and citizen science. Jessica Polka (ASAPbio, USA) delivered a powerful keynote on the pressures of publishing with preprints, and Malvika Sharan (The Turing Way, UK) presented on fostering open communities.

Building upon the momentum generated from the conference, we established the Concordia Open Science Working Group, whose first workshop was held on September 30, 2022. During this half-day session, more than 20 faculty members, trainees, and students from 8 different academic units, including Psychology, Computer Science and Software Engineering, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Biology, Mechanical, Industrial, and Aerospace Engineering, Education, Communication Studies, and the Library, gathered at the Loyola Campus to explore the challenges and possibilities of promoting open science at Concordia. This report presents the key insights derived from this workshop, as well as a comprehensive examination of the methodologies used and a full account of the results.

DOAJ is confirmed as a unique platform for many open access journals and a key index for African journals – DOAJ News Service

“DOAJ has double the number of OA journals from Africa and five times the number of OA journals from Global South countries compared with the Web of Science….

The OpenAlex data also confirmed that DOAJ indexes more African and Global South journals than Scopus or Web of Science…

although DOAJ has substantially better coverage of journals from Africa and the Global South than Web of Science or Scopus, it remains a fact that the majority of the known open access journals from areas are not listed by any of the major indexing services at all, including DOAJ!…”