Strong open access growth set to continue – report | Research Information

“Around a third of all global research articles are now published open access, according to a new report from the STM association. Recent strong growth in OA publishing is projected to continue – with some countries, such as the UK, on track for 90 per cent of their researchers’ output to be published OA within a year due to business model and operational innovations.

STM (the Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers) published the latest edition of The STM Report, the organisation’s  overview of the scientific and scholarly publishing market. The revised report, which adopts a new supplement format to be issued in regular thematic updates, reveals significant publisher-driven growth in OA and ‘continued dynamism’ in the scholarly communication ecosystem.

For the past 15 years, the STM Report has provided data and analysis for all involved in the global activity of research, highlighting and exploring the trends, issues and challenges facing scholarly publishing. The latest edition in the series: ‘STM Global Brief 2021 – Economics and market size’ provides an update on the size and shape of scholarly publishing and offers the latest global market values for the industry across scientific and technical, medical, and social sciences and humanities fields….”

Content at Scale – The Third Wave – The Scholarly Kitchen

“Third Wave – 2020s – AI and Open Content

This decade will see the tipping point reached for open research content between the [top down] expansion of OA initiatives from commercial publishers and the [bottom up] support for Open Science efforts from within the academy. Having more content freely available and more content on the same platforms enables large scale analyses. The economic models are shifting from the value of the content at the unit level to the deployment of tools to uncover intelligence in a large body of content….”

Universities without walls: A vision for 2030

“Open Science, making research accessible to all, will be the default way of producing knowledge. Universities will support a diverse non-commercial publishing system and will, themselves, be directly involved in such a system, by promoting and supporting non-commercial and smaller publishing initiatives. Data and other outputs resulting from research will be made FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable). Scientists will be adequately rewarded for the processing and publishing of data. Europe’s scholarly information infrastructure will facilitate cross-border, multidisciplinary research with advanced digital services and tools….”

Universities without walls: A vision for 2030

“Open Science, making research accessible to all, will be the default way of producing knowledge. Universities will support a diverse non-commercial publishing system and will, themselves, be directly involved in such a system, by promoting and supporting non-commercial and smaller publishing initiatives. Data and other outputs resulting from research will be made FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable). Scientists will be adequately rewarded for the processing and publishing of data. Europe’s scholarly information infrastructure will facilitate cross-border, multidisciplinary research with advanced digital services and tools….”

Open Access Book Publishing 2020-2024 – Research and Markets

“In today’s global market, it’s more important than ever to understand the evolution of academic publishing. Rely on the Open Access Book Publishing 2020-2024 to build your strategy in this emerging market for this year and beyond.

This report explains the origins of the open access movement, gives a timeline for its development, but most importantly, Simba Information quantifies open access book publishing as a market segment. Simba used the information it gathered through primary and secondary research to develop a financial outlook for open access book publishing with market projections through 2024. This research was conducted in conjunction with a larger study of the overall market for scholarly and professional publishing. Open Access Book Publishing 2020-2024 contains separate chapters covering the market, notable publishers and programs, and issues and forecast that include:

Exclusive analysis of market size and structure
Title growth metrics
Open access book publishing by discipline
A look at key geographic markets that are pushing the development of open access books
Exclusive market projections to 2024 and more.

Publishers and investment professionals can trust Open Access Book Publishing 2020-2024 to provide the inside intelligence needed to evaluate growth potential, understand trends affecting the industry, and size up the competition. Examples of some of the issues discussed include:

The continued evolution of open access
The impact of open access in social science and humanities vs. scientific, technical and medical
Prevailing business models and experiments
Open access mandates spread to books
Opportunity for monographs and conference proceedings
Emerging markets fertile ground for open access….”

Serials Price Projection Report 2021

“At the time of writing, we expect the overall effective publisher price increases for academic and academic medical libraries for 2021 (before any currency impact) to be in the range of 2 to 3 percent for individual titles. Also important is the role of e-journal packages in the information marketplace. More than half of EBSCO’s sales for 2020 were from e-journal packages; likewise, library budgets are, in large part, spent on these collections. As a result, their impact on the overall serials price increase is significant. We expect the overall average price increase for e-journal packages, including provisions for mandatory take-over titles, upgrades, etc. to be in the range of 1 to 3 percent….”


Two Steps Forward, One Step Back – The Pandemic’s Impact on Open Access Progress – The Scholarly Kitchen

“2019 was a watershed year for progress in the transition of research publishing to open access (OA). The shakeup caused by Plan S had some time to sink in, cancellations of big subscription deals ramped up, and as I noted last October, the conversation had shifted from “eventually things will move to OA,” to instead a sense of urgency, “we’re on the clock for a move to OA.” The value of open science (increased transparency, open data, open access to research results) has become increasingly obvious during the current global health crisis. Both the positives (rapid reporting and sharing of information) and the negatives (the glut of bad science being issued as preprints and promoted via mainstream media without proper curation) are now evident, with the good generally outweighing the bad. Despite the daily evidence of the importance of shifting to an open science environment for research, the economic fallout from the pandemic is going to make necessary progress difficult and slow….

Business models beyond the APC may have an even bigger struggle ahead. Because of the many shortcomings of the APC model, a variety of OA business models that can be applied in different contexts and that are appropriate for each community and research field are needed for long-term sustainability. Right now, most of the non-APC models in-play rely upon voluntary spend from someone. Will the cost paid for publication of a Diamond-OA journal out of a library make the cut when budgets are being slashed? Collective action strategies that rely upon libraries voluntarily paying for memberships or subscribe-to-open models are going to be similarly hard to justify, given that you receive all the same benefits of the model whether or not you choose to pay….

Open access relies on the concept that knowledge is a public good, but acknowledges that there are costs and efforts necessary to produce and maintain that public good. The global health crisis has the potential to bring stakeholders together in support of improving the way we communicate research results, but the accompanying economic downturn may create significant roadblocks to those efforts.”

Gold Open Access, Organizational and Discipline-Specific Barriers to its Adoption and Business Model Viability | Open Research Community

“Thus, transformative Gold Open Access agreements do not necessarily produce win-win results for publishers and universities, since they likely demand capital investment, protracted inter-organizational negotiations, and expertise-related costs. This indicates the likely continued importance of Green and hybrid Open Access for the scholarly publishing market and a significant role for innovative business models in this sector.”

Covid-19 Shows Scientific Journals Like Elsevier Need to Open Up – Bloomberg

“One big change brought on by Covid-19 is that virtually all the scientific research being produced about it is free to read. Anyone can access the many preliminary findings that scholars are posting on “preprint servers.” Data are shared openly via a multitude of different channels. Scientific journals that normally keep their articles behind formidable paywalls have been making an exception for new research about the virus, as well as much (if not all) older work relevant to it.

This response to a global pandemic is heartening and may well speed that pandemic to its end. But after that, what happens with scientific communication? Will everything go back behind the journal paywalls?



Well, no. Open-access advocates in academia have been pushing for decades to make more of their work publicly available and paywall-free, and in recent years they’ve been joined by the government agencies and large foundations that fund much scientific research. Covid-19 has accelerated this shift. I’m pretty sure there’s no going back. …”

Will the pandemic permanently alter scientific publishing?

“Anna Obenauf had never posted her results to a preprint server, but she decided to make the jump in April. She was racing against another team to get findings on a rare skin cancer out quickly, so she uploaded her manuscript to bioRxiv — just like thousands of COVID-19 researchers have been doing during this pandemic. It was a turning point for Obenauf, a cancer biologist at the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology in Vienna, who particularly liked the quick feedback she received (L. Leiendecker et al. Preprint at bioRxiv; 2020). She says she will probably continue to post some of her team’s work on preprint servers in the future.

The COVID-19 crisis has underlined just how fast and open science publishing can be — when scientists want it that way. Researchers working on the pandemic are sharing preliminary results on preprint servers and institutional websites at unprecedented rates, embracing the kind of early, public sharing that physicists and mathematicians have practised for decades. Journals have whisked manuscripts through to formal publication in record time, aided by researchers who have rapidly peer-reviewed the studies. And dozens of publishers and journals, including Elsevier, Springer Nature and the New England Journal of Medicine, have made coronavirus research — new and old — free to read. They have pledged to continue doing so for the duration of the outbreak, and have encouraged or, in some instances, required researchers to post their manuscripts on preprint servers….”

Without stronger academic governance, Covid-19 will concentrate the corporate control of academic publishing | Impact of Social Sciences

Whilst the Covid-19 pandemic has led to a short term uptick in open research practices, both in response to the virus and the need for remote access to research and teaching materials. Samuel Moore argues that the long term impact of Covid-19 and its related economic impact will likely increase the corporate control of academic publishing. Citing the need for increased scholar led forms publishing operating outside of market interests, he suggests now is the time to rethink how scholars and research organisations can constructively engage with the governance of scholarly communication.

News & Views: Market Predictions During Economic Uncertainty – Delta Think

“Scholarly publishers are wondering how the COVID-19 pandemic and the unfolding economic downturn will impact the scholarly journals market. Of course, this is an impossible question to answer definitively, but are there events in the past that we can use for guidance?

This month we look at the impact of the 2007-2008 financial crisis, bringing some longstanding historical analysis linking GDP and publishing revenues up to date. Our aim is to see what factors may act as a barometer of the economic impacts we might expect during this challenging time….

 The key factors related to journal market growth look set to fall significantly, and the balance of business models across the marketplace has changed. It seems likely that a fall in the numbers of researchers and global economic activity will lead to a decline in the overall market size for journals publishing.

As is always the case, averages are not distributed equally throughout the market. Fully APC-based Open Access publishers are more at risk, because of their dependency on article volume and the close connection of their cash-flow to throughput. This reality may drive a shift towards non-APC based OA, such as subscription and membership models applied to OA….”

Academic Publishing and the Future of Open Access : Optometry and Vision Science

“Unfortunately, sanity, clarity, and insight about the future of academic publishing are hard to come by—the future is highly uncertain. If I had to say which way the momentum is shifting, it is toward open access and a more binary division between very large and small publishers, with fewer midsize publishers. That probably means there will be some additional industry consolidation and possible acquisitions. Journals affiliated with academic societies will be pressured to find sufficient subscription or other revenue to support their journals. Alternatively, author charges or some viable mix of subscription and page charge revenues will sustain them. Publishers will be increasingly pressured to serve the interests of authors as well as the interests of their funding agencies. The prospect of 38% annual profits is likely gone, and publishers will be pushed to further innovate in how they produce, distribute, and market scientific knowledge to maintain their relevance and market share. It would be interesting if scientific articles were treated like digital music. If a unifying force were capable of bringing the biggest publishing houses to the table to negotiate reasonable fees for libraries, authors, and the broader public, this could truly transform the world’s access to scientific knowledge….”

What to Expect in the Publishing World in 2020 – Against the Grain

“Earlier this month, a rumor began to circulate that the US government was planning on passing an executive order that would mandate all papers from federally funded research be open access immediately upon publication—abolishing the 12-month paywall allowed under current rules.

In response, more than 135 scientific societies and academic publishers penned an open letter to President Donald Trump’s Administration strongly opposing such a policy, warning that the proposed changes would “jeopardize the intellectual property of American organizations engaged in the creation of high-quality peer-reviewed journals and research articles and would potentially delay the publication of new research results.” The letter has been widely criticized by academics and open-access advocates on social media….

Although the [Plan S] coalition has managed to gain some international members, the overall response to Plan S has been lukewarm outside of Europe. India’s government, for example, decided to forgo joining the coalition and develop its own national effort to advance open access, despite earlier indications that it would be joining the group. In Latin America, where Argentina has joined cOAlition S, academics have raised concerns about the initiative’s focus on pay-for-publishing models. One worry is that if funders or universities are required to cover fees for publishing open access in commercial journals, financial resources could be diverted from their current system, under which journals are free to publish in and free to read—and scientific publications are owned by academic institutions….”