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OA and commercial publishers Thomas Krichel 2005-05-14.

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Presentation on theme: "OA and commercial publishers Thomas Krichel 2005-05-14."— Presentation transcript:

1 OA and commercial publishers Thomas Krichel

2 me I am academic economist by training. Now an assistant professor at the Palmer School of Library and Information Science. My main reason for complacency is the creation of RePEc, a large digital library for academic economics.

3 this talk In the first part, I will stick to the subject and represent some views from commercial publishers.. In the second part, I have some open ideas. FIRST PART

4 me and commercial publishers I never worked for a commercial publisher. Two of my former lovers did. My future boss, John Regazzi did. –I use his piece The Shifting Sands of Open Access Publishing, Serials Review 2004; 30: –I also use data from slides by Michael Mabe, from his talk STM Publishing & Open Access, given at the Open Access Summit, Cologne,

5 commercial publishing & OA Commercial publishing means publishing to make financial gain. Publishing means either –make public –be an agent to which someone gives rights in exchange for the agent gathering income from. There is no conflict between OA and commercial publishing per se.

6 limits to the OA phenomenon Mainly the OA movement is limited to open access to research publications normally appearing in STM journals, conference proceedings Other areas not yet affected –books and monographs –teaching materials –primary data

7 STM article field Most of the STM articles come through scientific journals. Some industry figures –there are about 16k journals –there are about 2k publishers 600 commercial 1400 not-for-profit – million articles per annum, growing at about 3% per annum –1 million unique authors –10-15 million readers

8 the scholarly journal Scholarly journals provide four functions –registration –certification –dissemination –archive Doing this, publishers create value and thats what they live on.

9 open access journals Options for open access include –open access to back issues even if current issues remain closed –author pays open access –institutional substitution –advertising (?) Partly founded on the belief that electronic technology reduces cost.

10 size of OA (Johns figures) 2% of the STM journals are open access. There is a directory funded by OSI (Soros). Less than 20% of journals listed in the DOAJ are author pays 28% are free online of pay for print journals Others are subsidized. OA mainly in the biomedical and social sciences. Physical sciences have little.

11 OA publishing unsustainable? Current business models appear unsustainable without subsidies or loss. estimates as –$1950--$1025 per article for OA –$1425--$2750 per article for non-OA because of cost of access control Current costs are for accepted papers –PLoS charges $1520 ? –BioMedCentral charges $520 ? Submission fees may be on the way.

12 author pays is problematic Creates financial barriers to publication where currently there are only quality ones –Institutional rationing of who gets to publish and where threatens academic freedom –Faculty pressure to liquidate library for funds to publish –poor authors excluded or have to be subsidised by the rest. Big business get to read for free articles paid for by universities.

13 quality and sustainability One idea for survival of OA journals would be to publish a lot. Interestingly enough, OA journals publish fewer papers than conventional. –OA averages 30 per annum –Elsevier averages 150 per annum So where is the alleged loss of quality? Most OA journals struggle in vain to get quality contents.

14 PLoS spiral While quality is difficult to achieve, it is achieved, some OA publishers will get a lot of money. They will claim that their high costs come from high rejection rates. The high cost will be a quality signal. This will lead to a system that is more expensive to maintain than the current subscription model.

15 from riches to rags Rich universities are worried that since they publish a lot, it will end up costing them more. This is most famously express in a 2004 Cornell University study by Davis et al /Dienst/UI/1.0/Display/cul.lib/ Since the top of the academic food chain is based at leading universities, this is bad news for OA.

16 SECOND PART The idea of a journal is a relict of paper technology, when making text public was expensive. Not making a paper publicly available appears technically silly because there is no cost to putting it up on the web. Conventional citations are a paper mans hyperlink.

17 the Internet shock The digital document + Internet enlarges the opportunity set of actors. In the past, discipline communities, which in the past faced technological constraints that have tied it together. The expanded opportunity set is likely to lead to divergent behavior.

18 STM journal Scholarly communication happens between scholars. Scholarly communities will decide where to go, and will rely on visionary leaders, like Paul Ginsparg for Physics and yours truly for Economics. Innovation is only likely to come from within scholarly communities. Conservation is likely to come from libraries.

19 Thank you for your attention!

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