The ‘open access effect’: freely available academic books

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The benefits of publishing  research open access are numerous and well-known. Allowing a paper to be available to all can increase citation rates and drive public engagement. But is the same effect seen when the open access model is applied to academic books? Springer Nature has published over 400 freely available books on their SpringerLink platform. In a recent press release, the publisher announced results of a major comparative analysis which demonstrated that the ‘open access effect’ appears to be real for scholarly books as well. Continue reading “The ‘open access effect’: freely available academic books”

Free eBook on ‘Everything You Need to Know about Open Access’

Open AccessWith the advent of the internet and emergence of digital archiving, access to information has significantly increased. A major milestone in making information publicly and freely available was the Human Genome Project. In early 2000, important events such as Budapest OA Initiative and Berlin Declaration acted as enablers to the OA movement. However, the growth…
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LSE’s “request a copy” service: widening access to research both within and beyond academia

The 2016 introduction of HEFCE’s open access research policy and specifically its “deposit on acceptance” message has led to a large volume of restricted-access items being placed in institutional repositories. Dimity Flanagan reports on how LSE Library’s “request a copy service” has offered would-be readers a way to overcome this obstacle to research, and how the data the service provides […]

My reflection on my journey in open access or Can you be a librarian without being an open access advocate?

In honor of this year’s Open Access Week, here’s a personal reflection of my engagement with open access over the 10 years of my career in academic libraries. I also consider the question ““Can you be a librarian without being an open access advocate”.

Many of you may find my personal reflection of my journey in open access to be of little interest, so please feel free to jump ahead to my discussion of “Can you be a librarian without being an open access advocate?” Continue reading “My reflection on my journey in open access or Can you be a librarian without being an open access advocate?”

Open Access Week 2017 – Open in Order to…

As a proud co-founder of Open Access Week, we hope you will join us in celebrating progress and promoting awareness to help make Open Access – the founding principle of PLOS – the new norm in scholarship and research globally. This year’s theme is “Open in Order to…” and invites the community to focus on what openness enables.

Since PLOS’ beginning, we’ve been open in order to accelerate progress in science and medicine through publishing, advocacy and innovation to benefit the research community and beyond. PLOS is open in order to ensure that: research outcomes are discoverable, accessible and available for discussion; science communication is constructive, transparent and verifiable; and publishing advances reproducibility, transparency and accountability. Continue reading “Open Access Week 2017 – Open in Order to…”

Open access rates of a institution’s output vs a LIS Journal output — or are librarians walking the talk?

Open access rates of a institution’s output vs a LIS Journal output — or are librarians walking the talk?

I was using a combination of oadoi + Openrefine described here to determine the % of free to read for my institutions.

Basically, I pulled a list of dois via Scopus, pulled them into openrefine and used openrefine to pull in results via’s API, parsing the JSON output with openrefine functions.

Being inspired by 1Science’s oafigr service that claims to help librarians with subscription decisions by telling them the amount that was already free to read, I also did the same for a few LIS Journals.

In particularly I chose more practitioner LIS journals like journal of academic librarianship, to see if librarians were “walking the talk” as they say in self archiving and promoting Green OA.

What did I find? Continue reading “Open access rates of a institution’s output vs a LIS Journal output — or are librarians walking the talk?”

Scholarly Commons Promotes Open Research

The process of research seems simple from the outside: read, experiment, publish, and repeat. Yet, paywalls formed by national or cultural groups is a barrier to scholarly communication. Scholarly Commons and its working group, the Scholarly Commons Working Group, seek to change that. In their effort to advance scholarship dissemination, more work needs to be  … Read more

European Open Science Cloud: Largest Research Data Repository


A “repository” is a receptacle in which data are kept and made available. In academic publishing, many major universities and its libraries have their own repositories for academic research papers. Other repositories are public and created to offer open access to researchers as an alternative publishing route using standard channels. Not only are these channels  … Read more

Open-access mega-journals: The future of scholarly communication or academic dumping ground? A review

Valerie Spezi, Simon Wakeling, Stephen Pinfield, Claire Creaser, Jenny Fry, Peter Willett, (2017) “Open-access mega-journals: The future of scholarly communication or academic dumping ground? A review”, Journal of Documentation, Vol. 73 Issue: 2, pp.263-283,

“While the academic literature relating specifically to OAMJs is relatively sparse, discussion in other fora is detailed and animated, with debates ranging from the sustainability and ethics of the mega-journal model, to the impact of soundness-only peer review on article quality and discoverability, and the potential for OAMJs to represent a paradigm-shifting development in scholarly publishing.”

Scholarly journal publishing in transition- from restricted to open access

Björk, BC. Electron Markets (2017) 27: 101.

While the business models used in most segments of the media industry have been profoundly changed by the Internet, surprisingly little has changed in the publishing of scholarly peer reviewed journals. Electronic delivery has become the norm, but the same publishers as before are still dominating the market, selling content to subscribers. This article asks the question why Open Access (OA) to the output of mainly publicly funded research hasn’t yet become the mainstream business model. OA implies a reversal of the revenue logic from readers paying for content to authors paying for dissemination in form of universal free access. The current situation is analyzed using Porter’s five forces model. The analysis demonstrates a lack of competitive pressure in this industry, leading to so high profit levels of the leading publishers that they have not yet felt a strong need to change the way they operate. OA funded by article publishing charges (APCs) might nevertheless start rapidly becoming more common. The driving forces of change currently consist of the public research funders and administrations in Europe, which are pushing for OA by starting dedicated funds for paying the APCs of authors from the respective countries. This has in turn lead to a situation in which publishers have introduced “big deals” involving the bundling of (a) subscription to all their journals, (b) APCs for their hybrid journals and (c) in the future also APCs to their full OA journals. This appears to be a relatively risk free strategy for the leading publishers to retain both their dominance of the market and high profit levels.

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