No Evilsevier DEAL!

“No matter how well-intended (and we all know to which place the road leads that is paved with good intentions!), transformative agreements (such as DEAL in Germany) are generally the wrong tool at the wrong time for making publicly funded science accessible to the public. If you count public statements, the picture of a rare academic consensus emerges: the DEAL-incompatible proposals and criteria from the Council of EU Science Ministers were enthusiastically welcomed by a wide range of scientific organizations. This was not surprising as these conclusions originated from within the scholarly community and build on existing solutions within scholarly institutions. More surprising is the positive feedback coming from the smaller publishers. They welcome these modern concepts from the scientific community that have found their way into the EU decisions, because they finally give them an opportunity to compete with the larger publishers. In short, the only ones still considering DEAL to be up to the task are DEAL themselves and the big publishers; all other relevant actors who have made public statements so far, all reject DEAL.

If DEAL needs to be rejected in general, the Elsevier DEAL needs to be rejected with particular fervor. In addition to the reasons mentioned above, the price negotiated by DEAL with Elsevier is many times more expensive than the market-based solutions favored by all other stakeholders. These spiraling costs will eventually eat into the budget also of non-DEAL fields, which have already taken massive hits by the serials crisis. Elsevier is also part of the surveillance corporation RELX and the clauses in the contract that are intended to protect users from data abuse are useless, because they are neither policed nor enforced. This blank check issued to Elsevier makes participating institutions accomplices in the corporation’s eventual privacy violations. Especially in times of globally growing autocratic tendencies, there should be no question that German universities ought not to denigrate themselves to data suppliers for international intelligence services and law enforcement agencies – all important RELX customers….”

Open access | Journals | Oxford Academic

“Open access (OA) is a key part of how Oxford University Press (OUP) supports our mission to achieve the widest possible dissemination of high-quality research. We work closely with our publishing partners to ensure that we offer open access in a sustainable way that supports research publications for their communities and OUP offers authors an array of publishing options for authors to make their research available to all and comply with funder mandates….”

Scholarly Transformation Advice and Review (STAR) Team Criteria Summary – UC Libraries

“In its evaluation of transformative scholarly communication initiatives, the STAR Team takes into consideration criteria in several categories:

Baseline UC Libraries Principles
Potential for Transformative Influence
Community Engagement or Endorsement
UC Long-Term Affordability
Operational Sustainability and Integrity
Disclosure & Transparency
Protection from Financial Risk

The particular criteria the STAR Team uses to evaluate scholarly initiatives accepted for review can be seen on the team’s criteria workbook. The STAR Team reserves the right to include additional criteria as needed to complete a full evaluation of the transformative nature of the scholarly initiative. In order to evaluate each scholarly initiative thoroughly, STAR Team members ask vendors/producers to complete a questionnaire detailing various aspects of the initiative.

Expedited reviews can be requested for scholarly communication initiatives which require a rapid recommendation and for which there is a low financial threshold for participation.  The STAR Team has created an expedited review template upon which these recommendations are based….”

ACS Publications provides a new option to support zero-embargo green open access – American Chemical Society

“Beginning Oct. 1, 2023, the Publications Division of the American Chemical Society (ACS) will provide authors with a new option to satisfy funder requirements for zero-embargo green open access. Through this pathway, authors will be able to post accepted manuscripts with a CC BY license in open access repositories immediately upon acceptance.

To ensure a sustainable model of delivering services from submission to final editorial decision, ACS Publications is introducing an article development charge (ADC) as part of this new zero-embargo green open access option. The ADC covers the cost of ACS’ publishing services through the final editorial decision….”

Zero-Embargo Green Open Access – ACS Open Science

“A number of funders and institutions require authors to retain the right to post their accepted manuscripts immediately upon acceptance for publication in a journal, sometimes referred to as zero-embargo green open access (OA). More than 90% of ACS authors under these mandates have a simple and funded pathway to publish gold OA in ACS journals.

For those not covered by an institutional read and publish agreement or through other types of funding, ACS offers the option to post their accepted manuscripts with a CC BY license in open access repositories immediately upon acceptance. This option expands this small subset of authors’ choices beyond the existing option to wait 12 months to post at no cost.


An article development charge (ADC) will be applied if the zero-embargo green OA route is requested and the manuscript is recommended to be sent out for peer review. The ADC covers the cost of ACS’ publishing services through the final editorial decision….”

External Investments in Open Access and DEI Initiatives – Emory Libraries Blog

“Emory Libraries have long invested in our own and external organizations’ efforts to create a more equitable and open scholarly communications system. Library spending is no longer just about purchasing materials and providing access, but also for supporting these initiatives which benefit Emory researchers and students and the research community at large. This year our funding expanded to include new read-and-publish agreements and membership in the Open Education Network. Beginning in 2008 with an investment in the Hathi Trust, Emory Libraries has expanded its support for external open access and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives every year, and we are pleased to support over 20 projects to date. 

Here is a snapshot of the external initiatives supported by Emory Libraries funding. 

By helping to fund the missions of Knowledge Unlatched, Annual Reviews, Direct to Open, and University of Michigan Press Fund to Mission, Emory Libraries help to make publications open for everyone, not just subscribing libraries. 

Emory Libraries help support organizations that make knowledge and culture available and discoverable through ORCID, SPARC, the Authors Alliance, the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), Open Access Publishing in European Networks (OAPEN), and the Open Education Network (OEN). In addition, the libraries support DEI practices through a partnership with the Coalition for Diversity and Inclusion in Scholarly Communications (C4DISC).  

Through generous funding, Emory Libraries supports the digitization and preservation efforts of materials from historically underrepresented groups, and open access publishing of alternative press newspapers, magazines, and journals with the HathiTrust, punctum books, Reveal Digital, the South Asia Open Archives (SAOA), and the Global Press Archive. 

The Libraries also provide support for Emory researchers who wish to publish open access through a collection of read–and–publish agreements with the American Chemical Society, Cambridge University Press, the Institute of Physics, and the Royal Society….”

Read & Publish Open Access agreement with EIFL – The Company of Biologists

“Our 2021-2023 Read & Publish agreement with Electronic Information for Libraries (EIFL) has proved a great success.

Following the renewal of our agreement, from 2024, corresponding authors in the following countries can now benefit from publishing an uncapped number of Open Access research articles in our two fully Open Access journals – Disease Models & Mechanisms and Biology Open in addition to our hybrid journals, Development, Journal of Cell Science and Journal of Experimental Biology without paying an article processing charge (APC)….”

News & Views: What questions should your organization ask during times of change? – Delta Think

“The world of scholarly publishing continues to evolve.

Generative AI is currently trending, but new technology is nothing new. Remember the Information Superhighway? Web 2.0? The iPad revolutionizing the way we consumed content? The rise of XML?
Last summer’s OSTP memo made headlines. A zero embargo on open content is a significant and potentially disruptive change. But new policies have continued to shift: Plan S, the NIH deposit mandate, China’s publishing evolution, the Wellcome Trust’s early OA policies, to name a few.
Open Access was once an unproven model that many considered unlikely to be financially viable. Born-OA publishers now account for one fifth of content produced and have been growing an order of magnitude faster than the underlying market.
The APC-based OA business model is now itself being disrupted. Big OA publishers’ growth is slowing. Transformative Agreements and their like might move OA closer to the Big Deal. New Subscribe to Open launches are increasing even as calls for more equity are making publishers rethink their APC models entirely.
Operations change too. Publishers that once outsourced and divested their production suppliers have been acquiring publishing platforms and services companies as part of their competitive strategy….

Any change has the potential to disrupt the status quo. Another key set of questions therefore falls under the “what might break” category. If a particular policy was enacted or adopted, how might the revenue or cost change? Developing our example of looking at a policy promoting “open” publishing, you might ask:

What subscriptions might be at most or least risk?
Are there multiplier effects? For example, bundles or collections of journals that might be much less attractive if just a few key journals were removed or made open.
Are we clear about the value of subscriptions and of OA activity… by journal/collection/subject?
Are there other sources of value, such as advertising or licensing? How much are they dependent on paywalls or publishing fees?
At what threshold might we need to flip a journal from hybrid OA to fully OA?
At what threshold does a subscription journal become unviable?
How do we measure thresholds: Pricing? Volumes of output? Usage?…”

Open Access Unconference 2023: Community over Commercialization | SJSU Open Access Conference

“This free, virtual event will offer opportunities for discussion and dialog on critical issues in scholarly communications. Topics may include, but are not limited to, the following:

Open scholarship of all sorts, including OERs, Open Science, Open Data, Open Humanities, Open Knowledge;
Commercialization of OA models;
Proprietary versus community-minded infrastructure;
Read and Publish or “Transformative” agreements;
Garnering support from faculty, administrators, and legislators;
Preservation of open content;
Ethics of open content, including invisible labor embedded in OA creation, authors rights, content scraping by AI, etc.;
Economic issues in the scholarly communication environment, including publisher consolidation, distribution of resources and profits, and economic incentives of relevant actors and stakeholders….”

German science organizations strike open-access deal with Elsevier | Science | AAAS

“A new open-access publishing deal announced today has finally put to bed a long-running tussle between German science organizations and the publishing giant Elsevier. The agreement will allow German academics to publish open-access, or free-to-read, papers in the publisher’s journals at discounted fees, and give their institutions access to the full range of Elsevier titles at no extra cost.

Compared with the previous subscription-based arrangements, “We get a lot more for lots less money,” says Günter Ziegler, president of the Free University of Berlin and lead negotiator of Project DEAL, a nationwide consortium of universities and science funders that brokered the agreement. “That’s quite an achievement.”

The deal has been a long time coming. Project DEAL was set up in 2014 to negotiate agreements that would allow German-authored papers to be read for free after publication around the world while also giving German institutions full access to a wide range of journals, including paywalled ones. Negotiators hoped such agreements would both increase access and reduce institutions’ costs. The goal was a “publish and read” agreement, in which publishers are paid based solely on the number of articles published and in return provide access to all their journals….”

Viewpoint: It’s time to increase the momentum behind open access publishing | Science|Business

“It may look as if full Open Access is just around the corner. But out of the four million scientific papers published each year, some 61% are still behind subscription paywalls.

Notably in the medical field, progress has been painfully slow. Only 31% of all cancer-related publications are Open Access. For cardiovascular and respiratory diseases the figures are 20% and 16% respectively. In climate change, only 40% of publications are Open Access.

I think progress has been slow because there are still some people who believe that Open Access is synonymous with those predatory journals that publish for a fee without providing peer review or editing services. There are others who deliberately keep this myth alive.

Second, many academic libraries are locked into subscription budgets and cannot afford to liberate funds for Open Access. In other words, the switch from ‘pay to read’ to ‘pay to publish’ is complex.

Third, there is much criticism across the board that the Article Processing Costs charged for publishing an Open Access paper are just too high. But this is also misguided, since for example, Gold Open Access provides much better value for money than subscriptions.

While subscriptions cost between €4,000 to €9,500 per article, the article processing cost of Open Access publishing is on average €2,500 per article, although there are exceptional cases where almost €9,000 is charged. However, it has to be acknowledged that over recent years there has been an increase in processing charges.

Fourth and perhaps most importantly, the Transformative Agreements mentioned above, have not yet delivered.

Staying the course

To make further headway, my view is that we should stay on course and adhere to the principles of PLAN S. This means being ruthless about the 2024 deadline for transformative agreements to deliver a transition to full and immediate Open Access….”

DEAL Consortium and Elsevier Announce Germany-wide Open Access Agreement – DEAL Konsortium

“The DEAL Consortium is delighted to announce a transformative Open Access agreement with the global publisher Elsevier.

This milestone agreement will have a profound impact on the landscape of scholarly publishing and research access in Germany.

Under the terms of the five-year agreement, authors from participating institutions across Germany will publish their research in Elsevier’s journals as Open Access aricles under a open license retaining their copyright. This includes well-known journal brands such as Cell Press and The Lancet.

In addition to this new publishing opportunity, participating institutions will secure comprehensive reading access to almost the entire Elsevier journal collection hosted on ScienceDirect.

Learn more about the agreement here.”

Elsevier und DEAL schließen Open-Access-Vertrag |

Fünf Jahre nach gescheiterter DEAL-Verhandlung einigen sich Wissenschaftsverlag und deutsche Wissenschaftsorganisationen auf Publish-and-Read-Vereinbarung

Der internationale Wissenschaftsverlag Elsevier und das DEAL-Konsortium haben sich nach langen Verhandlungen auf einen Publish-and-Read-Vertrag geeinigt: Die Vereinbarung ermöglicht es Forschenden an teilnehmenden Einrichtungen, als submitting corresponding authors in über 2.500 Elsevier-Zeitschriften (inklusive der Zeitschriften von Cell Press und The Lancet) Open Access zu veröffentlichen. Dafür zahlen die Einrichtungen eine Publish-and-Read-Gebühr in Höhe von 2550 Euro pro Artikel. Bei einer hohen Teilnahmequote sinkt die Gebühr um 2% auf 2500 Euro. Teilnehmende Einrichtungen erhalten zudem 20% Rabatt auf die Listen-APCs der Elsevier Fully-Gold-Open-Access-Zeitschriften und 15% Rabatt auf die von Cell Press and The Lancet. Darüber hinaus erhalten sie einen Lesezugang zu nahezu allen wissenschaftlichen Zeitschriften von Elsevier (ebenfalls inklusive der Titel von Cell Press und The Lancet). Die Opt-In-Vereinbarung wurde am 1. September 2023 unterzeichnet und läuft bis zum 31. Dezember 2028.

Gescheiterte Verhandlung 2018 und Rückgang des Marktanteils

2018 scheiterten die DEAL-Verhandlungen mit Elsevier ( berichtete). Infolgedessen kündigten rund 200 deutsche Forschungseinrichtungen ihre Lizenzverträge mit Elsevier, woraufhin der Verlag den Zugang dieser Einrichtungen zu seinen Zeitschriften ab Juli 2018 beschränkte. Eine Studie aus dem Jahr 2021 belegt einen Rückgang des Marktanteils von Elsevier bei Artikeln von DEAL-Institutionen sowie der Zitationen von Elsevier-Artikel durch DEAL-Autor*innen ab 2018 ( berichtete). 2020 geriet Elsevier in die Kritik, da der Verlag auf die Bekämpfung sogenannter Schattenbibliotheken statt auf Open-Access-Verträge setzte.

Zwischen dem renommierten Wissenschaftsverlag Wiley und DEAL existiert bereits seit 2019 eine Open-Access-Vereinbarung; Springer Nature unterzeichnete im Januar 2020 eine DEAL-Vereinbarung.


Elsevier (1.09.2023-31.12.2028) | DEAL Konsortium

Der transformative Open-Access-Vertrag mit Elsevier ist der dritte Vertragsabschluss des DEAL-Konsortiums. Mit rund 11.000 Publikationen, die Forschende jährlich in Elsevier-Zeitschriften veröffentlichen, ist der Vertrag von zentraler Bedeutung für die deutsche Wissenschaftslandschaft und die freie Verfügbarkeit ihrer Forschungsergebnisse.

Teilnehmen können rund 900 Einrichtungen in Deutschland, darunter Hochschulen, Forschungsorganisationen, Forschungseinrichtungen des Bundes und der Länder, Ämter und Behörden und viele mehr.