IOP Publishing and the Japan Society of Applied Physics convert Applied Physics Express to fully gold OA    – IOP Publishing

“IOP Publishing (IOPP) and the Japan Society of Applied Physics (JSAP) announce that Applied Physics Express (APEX) is to become fully open access (OA). From January 2024, all articles published in APEX, the journal devoted to rapid dissemination of new findings in applied physics, will be immediately and openly accessible for anyone to read. The move reflects the increasing demand for more accessible and open science, and funders’ mandates requiring authors to publish their work in OA journals….

Together, IOPP and JSAP endorse equal opportunities for everyone to contribute to physical science and are committed to ensuring that the transition to OA is inclusive. IOP Publishing will support researchers based in low-income and lower-middle-income countries by covering their article publication charges (APCs), with waivers for eligible authors applied automatically.  

In addition, all JSAP official members receive a 20% APC discount.”

M?noa: Rare 200-year-old Japanese scrolls made accessible worldwide | University of Hawaii News

“Students and scholars at the University of Hawai?i at Manoa (and worldwide) can now easily access and view the fine details of rare, hand-painted Japanese scrolls, made possible by UH M?noa Library’s new state-of-the-art digitization lab. The scrolls titled ????? (Geigyo ransh?roku), or “A simple overview of whaling” were created in 1819 and gifted to UH in 2020 by Deborah Rudolph to honor the memory of her late husband, John Harvard Hawley. They depict the entire process of whale hunting during Japan’s Edo period (1600–1868). 

Previously only viewable in-person and by appointment in the library’s Asia Collection, the scrolls are now available online in high resolution, beyond what a user would see in person. 

The digitization project was the library’s largest and most challenging to date, with the two scrolls measuring 39 feet and 35 feet, respectively….”

A Year of Jxiv – Warming the Preprints Stone

“But alongside the growth of field-focused repositories, more recently there has been a trend towards developing preprint repositories that cater to communities associated with a particular country or language group. And while scholarship is often said to be borderless, as with real estate, when it comes to preprint servers, increasingly it’s location, location, location….

However, for all their potential benefits, regional and national repositories sometimes suffer from low uptake by the communities they serve and can struggle to secure sufficient funding to cover even modest infrastructure and administrative costs. They therefore typically operate on a shoestring, frequently relying on the efforts of volunteers who, no matter how well-intentioned and industrious, are placed in the invidious position of having to balance their commitment to the repository with competing demands of full-time academic and institutional roles. Such pressures can prove unsustainable, and in recent years have sadly claimed repositories serving the Arabic and francophone language communities, as well as that supporting researchers in Indonesia. IndiaRXiv, the repository launched in 2019 with the aim of boosting science research on the subcontinent, was forced to pull down the shutters temporarily in 2020 but has since reopened with a new hosting partner….

Although to many observers outside of Japan, the appearance of Jxiv was rather sudden, the idea of a Japanese national repository had actually been mooted for some time. However, the initiative gained renewed impetus with the outbreak of COVID-19, according to Ritsuko Nakajima, Director of the Department for Information Infrastructure at JST. “Whilst preprinting expanded rapidly in the early stages of the pandemic, the number of preprints coming out of Japan was relatively small and this concerned us,” Nakajima stated, noting that in an analysis provided by the National Institute for Science and Technology Policy (NISTEP), a leading national research institute charged with providing information and other support for the policy-making process, showed that Japan ranked only 13th in the world in terms of the number of COVID-19 related preprints in 2020. Given that Japan ranked 7th in the number of scientific papers published by any country in the same year, something seemed amiss. “The question then arose of whether a dedicated venue where researchers could post their findings in Japanese or English would help speed up the dissemination of research results within the community” she adds. This was felt to be especially important for encouraging researchers working in commercial environments who, unlike their counterparts in academia, are much less likely to create primary research products such as work reports in English….”

Scholarly paper pirating spikes in Japan, but critics slam journals’ ‘double-take’ fees – The Mainichi

“Illicit free downloads of academic papers are skyrocketing in Japan, reaching some 7.2 million in 2022, a Mainichi Shimbun investigation has found. And while the surge casts doubt on the ethics of the scholars involved, the trend is also believed to be fueled by the relentless increase in academic journal subscription fees.

The site providing download access to paywalled journal articles is “Sci-Hub,” established in 2011 by researchers in Kazakhstan. The site can bypass those paywalls using access credentials provided by people at universities that have subscriptions to the journals. And as of June this year, Sci-Hub was giving free and open download access to over 88 million articles. The site’s activities do infringe on the journals’ copyrights, and some publishers have filed claims for damages overseas….”

Japan Open Science Summit 2023?JOSS2023?

“Japan’s largest open science-themed conference “Japan Open Science Summit 2023 (JOSS2023)” will be held online from June 19th (Monday) to 23rd (Friday), 2023 . I will

? The Japan Open Science Summit brings together researchers in various research fields, supporters such as university librarians and URAs, researchers and developers of IT infrastructure, policy makers, people involved in companies and NPOs, and citizen scientists. It consisted of passionate sessions from various viewpoints.
? JOSS2023 will be held for the 5th time, and we are soliciting proposals for sessions in order to aim for a more participatory and active conference. I hope that we can create a place for more meaningful information exchange than ever before with new perspectives and ideas. It is also an ideal opportunity to share new initiatives and results related to open science with many people and expand community activities. We look forward to receiving your various proposals….”

Researchers support preprints and open access publishing, but with reservations: A questionnaire survey of MBSJ members – Ide – Genes to Cells – Wiley Online Library

Abstract:  Since the 1990s, journals have become increasingly online and open access. In fact, about 50% of articles published in 2021 were open access. The use of preprints (i.e., non-peer-reviewed articles) has also increased. However, there is limited awareness of these concepts among academics. Therefore, we conducted a questionnaire-based survey among members of the Molecular Biology Society of Japan. The survey was conducted between September 2022 and October 2022, with 633 respondents, 500 of whom (79.0%) were faculty members. In total, 478 (76.6%) respondents had published articles as open access, and 571 (91.5%) wanted to publish their articles in open access. Although 540 (86.5%) respondents knew about preprints, only 183 (33.9%) had posted preprints before. In the open-ended section of the questionnaire survey, several comments were made about the cost burdens associated with open access and the difficulty of how academic preprints are handled. Although open access is widespread, and recognition of preprints is increasing, some issues remain that need to be addressed. Academic and institutional support, and transformative agreement may help reduce the cost burden. Guidelines for handling preprints in academia are also important for responding to changes in the research environment.


Tokyo Institute of Technology Partners With Taylor & Francis in New Read and Publish Agreement | STM Publishing News

“Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and Taylor & Francis have announced a new three-year transformative partnership to increase the publication of open access (OA) articles by researchers at the leading science and technology institution.

Under the agreement, articles with a corresponding author based at Tokyo Tech will receive funding support to publish OA in Taylor & Francis and Routledge Open Select (hybrid) journals.

Tokyo Tech is the first member of the Japan Alliance of University Library Consortia for E-Resources (JUSTICE) to opt in to a new ‘read & publish’ deal negotiated by the consortium. The agreement also ensures Tokyo Tech users can continue to read all the Taylor & Francis journals the library subscribed to in 2022….”

How was the transition to open access advanced in 2022? | Research Information

“Undoubtedly, 2022 has been a year of growth for open access (OA). Funder policies and deadlines have come into play and, as a result of the pandemic, the impact and benefits of open research and open access are now better understood by people beyond academia. 

Overall, two themes featured strongly – the need for OA take up to become more global and the importance for authors to remain able to publish in their journal of choice. Taken together these themes were instrumental to enabling OA growth in 2022….

And when we look at the policy developments that have taken place this year with a number of countries reviewing their approach to OA and considering policy recommendations to speed up the transition, this move beyond Europe is likely to continue:

US- The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP)) has updated the US policy guidance to make the results of taxpayer-supported research immediately available to the American public at no cost

Australia – Australian funding agency, National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), has introduced the requirement that scholarly publications arising from the research it funds be made freely available and accessible

India – the Ministry of Education has announced the deadline for the launch of the “One Nation, One Subscription” (ONOS) policy for scientific research papers and academic journals from April 2023 to ensure countrywide access for researchers and the broader public.


Come 2023, we are likely to see even greater take up by authors of OA. Moreover publishers, such as Springer Nature, continue to be ready to work with funders and others to ensure that these policies drive the OA transition in a sustainable way while ensuring the needs of the researchers continue to be met. For a long time we have had the ‘supply’ (the ability to publish OA), what we have been waiting for is the ‘demand’ (authors wanting to publish OA)….”

Pioneering OA agreement in Asia signed between Springer Nature and Japanese universities | Corporate Affairs Homepage

Springer Nature has agreed the largest Transformative Agreement in Japan with 10 institutions participating in an innovative pilot. This will see nearly 900 articles published OA in the coming year, marking a significant step forward to Open Science in the region.  


Oxford University Press unveils landmark Read and Publish deal in Japan | Oxford University Press

The world’s largest university press­, Oxford University Press (OUP), has today announced a transformative three-year Read and Publish agreement with major journals consortium, the Japan Alliance of University Library Consortia for E-Resources (JUSTICE).

Asia tipped to follow US lead on open access | Times Higher Education (THE)

“Asian research powerhouses will introduce open access (OA) mandates within the next “two to three” years, experts have predicted, in the wake of last month’s landmark order by the Biden administration.

Under the US decision, the published results of federally funded research must be made immediately and freely available to readers, starting from 2025. This follows the introduction of similar rules across Europe and the UK, spearheaded by the Plan S initiative.

Home to four of the top 10 research-producing countries – China, Japan, South Korea and India – Asia now appears poised to become the next battleground….”

Guest Post – Open Access in Japan: Tapping the Stone Bridge – The Scholarly Kitchen

“April Fool’s Day is not really a thing in Japan, so whereas many companies in the West tend to avoid the first of the month when making important announcements, it is in no way unusual that the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), the nation’s second-largest public-sector research funder chose April 1st, 2022 to unveil its revised open access policy and implementation guidelines with a typical lack of fanfare outside of its home country….

Such a comparatively low-key approach is in line with past precedent as Japanese funding bodies such as JST, have typically opted for a light-touch and iterative approach to open access policies – which for the most part have been developed in consultation with publishers – in contrast to counterparts in other countries that have put forward more radical and headline-generating open access initiatives such as the US OSTP “Holdren Memo”, Plan S, and UKRI’s open access policy announced in mid-2021. Previous versions of the JST open access policy issued in 2013 and 2017 went little remarked upon in many open science circles and were notable for their conciliatory approach, in contrast to the openly-stated ambition to disrupt and reform the world of scholarly publishing of many other funders. Following this consultative tradition, the current policy was circulated in draft form to publisher members of CHORUS, of which JST is a participating funder, for comment prior to publication….

The most noticeable difference between the new policy and previous iterations is the introduction of an embargo period which stipulates that at minimum the Accepted Manuscript (AM) of any paper arising from a project submitted for funding to JST after the go-live date of April 1, 2022, must be made publicly accessible in an institutional or public repository in Japan within 12 months of publication of the resultant journal article. Whilst cautious by European standards, this is the first time that an embargo of any type has been included in the JST policy. In addition to AMs of research articles, the policy covers those of review articles and conference papers. While the revised policy signals a preference for the green route and does not mandate that the VoR be made available open access, publication as an open access article is a “permitted” route and under the new policy, APCs are fully reimbursable from grant money….

Furthermore, it is notable that both the policy and its implementation guidelines are silent on the twin subjects of transformative journals and transformative agreements. …

Advocates of faster and more radical transformation will probably lament the lack of clarity or silence on certain issues – such as a ban on publishing in hybrid journals and gaps around CC BY licensing for the AM – that have become totemic in many open access circles and offer a more lukewarm response. Those in the latter group may find some consolation in the knowledge that in Japan, caution does not necessarily indicate disapproval and is often regarded as a virtue, encapsulated in the phrase: ???????? (Ishibashi wo tataite wataru) “to tap on a stone bridge before crossing.” Cautious progress may initially be slower than those who rush headlong, but caution helps avoids missteps. And you’re still going across the bridge.”


Japan Science and Technology Agency revises its open science policy

JST revised JST Policy on Open Access to Research Publications and Research Data Management (JST Open Science Policy) in consideration of recent trends of Open Science both inside and outside Japan in April 2022. This policy defines JST’s basic stance on Open Access to research publications and management of research data resulting from research projects funded by JST. Researchers who participate in those projects are required to handle research results appropriately complying with this policy.