A Very Long Embargo: Journal Choice Reveals Active Non-Compliance with Funder Open Access Policies by Australian and Canadian Neuroscientists

Authors: Shaun Yon-Seng Khoo, Belinda Po Pyn Lay

Research funders around the world have implemented open access policies that require funded research to be made open access, usually by self-archiving, within 12 months of publication.

Elsevier is unique among major science publishers because it produces several journals with non-compliant self-archiving embargoes of more than 12 months. We used Elsevier’s Scopus database to study the rate at which Australian and Canadian neuroscientists publish in Elsevier’s non-compliant (embargoes > 12 months) and compliant journals (embargoes ≤ 12 months).

We also examined publications in immediate open access neuroscience journals that had the DOAJ Seal and neuroscience publications in open access mega-journals. We found that the implementation of Australian and Canadian funder open access policies in 2012/2013 and 2015 did not reduce the number of publications in non-compliant journals.

Instead, scientific output in all publication types increased with the greatest growth in immediate open access journals. This data suggests that funder open access policies that are similar to the Australian and Canadian policies are likely to have little effect beyond an association with a general cultural trend towards open access.

URL : A Very Long Embargo: Journal Choice Reveals Active Non-Compliance with Funder Open Access Policies by Australian and Canadian Neuroscientists

DOI: http://doi.org/10.18352/lq.10252


Measuring Open Access Policy Compliance: Results of a Survey

Authors : Shannon Kipphut-Smith, Michael Boock, Kimberly Chapman, Michaela Willi Hooper


In the last decade, a significant number of institutions have adopted open access (OA) policies. Many of those working with OA policies are tasked with measuring policy compliance.

This article reports on a survey of Coalition of Open Access Policy Institutions (COAPI) members designed to better understand the methods currently used for measuring and communicating OA policy success.


This electronic survey was distributed to the COAPI member listserv, inviting both institutions who have passed an implemented policies and those who are still developing policies to participate.


The results to a number of questions related to topics such as policy workflows, quantitative and qualitative measurement activities and related tools, and challenges showed a wide range of responses, which are shared here.


It is clear that a number of COAPI members struggle with identifying what should be measured and what tools and methods are appropriate. The survey illustrates how each institution measures compliance differently, making it difficult to benchmark against peer institutions.


As a result of this survey, we recommend that institutions working with OA policies be as transparent as possible about their data sources and methods when calculating deposit rates and other quantitative measures.

It is hoped that this transparency will result in the development of a set of qualitative and quantitative best practices for assessing OA policies that standardizes assessment terminology and articulates why institutions may want to measure policies.

URL : Measuring Open Access Policy Compliance: Results of a Survey

DOI : https://doi.org/10.7710/2162-3309.2247

Open Access Policy in the UK: From Neoliberalism to the Commons

Author : Stuart Andrew Lawson

This thesis makes a contribution to the knowledge of open access through a historically  and theoretically informed account of contemporary open access policy in the UK (2010–15).

It critiques existing policy by revealing the influence of neoliberal ideology on its creation, and proposes a commons-based approach as an alternative. The historical context in Chapters 2 and 3 shows that access to knowledge has undergone numerous changes over the centuries and the current push to increase access to research, and political  controversies around this idea, are part of a long tradition.

The exploration of the origins and meanings of ‘openness’ in Chapter 4 enriches the understanding of open access as a concept and makes possible a more nuanced critique of specific instantiations of open access in later chapters.

The theoretical heart of the thesis is Chapter 5, in which neoliberalism is analysed with a particular focus on neoliberal conceptions of liberty and openness. The subsequent examination of neoliberal higher education in Chapter 6 is therefore informed by a thorough grounding in the ideology that underlies policymaking in the neoliberal era.

This understanding then acts as invaluable context for the analysis of the UK’s open access policy in Chapter 7. By highlighting the neoliberal aspects of open access policy, the political tensions within open access advocacy are shown to have real effects on the way that open access is unfolding.

Finally, Chapter 8 proposes the commons as a useful theoretical model for conceptualising a future scholarly publishing ecosystem that is free from neoliberal ideology. An argument is made that a commons-based open access policy is possible, though must be carefully constructed with close attention paid to the power relations that exist between different scholarly communities.

URL : Open Access Policy in the UK: From Neoliberalism to the Commons

Alternative location : http://stuartlawson.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/2018-09-03-Lawson-thesis.pdf

How open is open access research in Library and Information Science?

Authors : Wanyenda Leonard Chilimo, Omwoyo Bosire Onyancha

The study investigates Library and Information Science (LIS) journals that published research articles between 2003 and 2013, which were about open access (OA) and were indexed in LIS databases.

The purpose was to investigate the journals’ OA policies, ascertain the degree to which these policies facilitate OA to publications, and investigate whether such texts are also available as OA. The results show that literature growth in the domain has been significant, with a total of 1,402 articles produced during the eleven years under study.

The OA policies of the fifty-six journals that published the highest number of articles were analysed. The results show that most articles (404; 41%) were published in hybrid journals, whereas 272 (29.7%) appeared in OA journals.

Some 143 (53%) of the articles published in hybrid journals were available as green OA copies. In total, 602 (66%) of all the articles published were available as OA.

The results show that the adoption of OA for research articles on that very subject is somewhat higher than in other fields. The study calls on LIS professionals to be conversant with the OA policies of the various journals that may publish their research.

URL : How open is open access research in Library and Information Science?

Alternative location : http://sajlis.journals.ac.za/pub/article/view/1710

Open Access Books: an international collaboration to explore the practical implications for librarians of increasing access to scholarly research outputs

Authors : Elsie Zhou, Leon Errelin, Sam Oakley, Neil Smyth

Open access advocacy and partnership is an established role for libraries across the world: books continue to be a challenge. Books and book chapters remain a vital output for many research areas. Open access policies have focused primarily on journal articles and serial publications, potentially creating an imbalance in the research literature freely available, and possibly having a negative impact on book publications in terms of readership and citations.

Publisher permissions for journal articles can usually be accessed from Sherpa RoMEO, but book contracts continue to be a mostly hidden agreement between publisher and researcher, inaccessible to librarians who are supporting and driving the open access agenda within an institution.

What are the current challenges for librarians in making academics books openly available? To what extent will this limit the mediating role of librarians in scholarly communication? Is this role sustainable?

A global perspective is provided with a comparison of distinctive experiences at two leading international universities: Swansea University; and the University of Nottingham Ningbo China. Swansea University is seeking to create more open access book content in line with the United Kingdom’s Higher Education Funding Council for Education Research Excellence Framework Open Access policy.

The University of Nottingham Ningbo China is seeking to maximize the dissemination and visibility of research to a global audience through open access.

This paper focusses on the issues and challenges for librarians who wish to increase the number of books and book chapters available open access, including: relationships with global publishing partners; the complexity of publisher policies for books; challenging existing researcher practices; and, reskilling librarians for advocacy and influencing roles in scholarly communication.

A set of recommendations is drawn from this in order to improve the library and information service roles in supporting research, publishing process and improving open access to book content.

URL : Open Access Books: an international collaboration to explore the practical implications for librarians of increasing access to scholarly research outputs

Alternative location : http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/2193

The UK Scholarly Communication Licence: Attempting to Cut through the Gordian Knot of the Complexities of Funder Mandates, Publisher Embargoes and Researcher Caution in Achieving Open Access

Authors : Julie Baldwin, Stephen Pinfield

Whilst take-up of open access (OA) in the UK is growing rapidly due partly to a number of funder mandates, managing the complexities of balancing compliance with these mandates against restrictive publisher policies and ingrained academic priorities, has resulted in UK higher education institutions (HEIs) often struggling with confused researchers, complex workflows, and rising costs.

In order to try to address this situation, the UK Scholarly Communication Licence (UK-SCL) was formulated to bypass the root causes of many of these challenges by implementing a licensing mechanism for multiple-mandate compliance in one single policy.

This is the first empirical study to focus on the genesis of the UK-SCL and how its implementation has been conceived thus far. A qualitative research method was used, taking the form of 14 semi-structured interviews with key stakeholders from the initiative across the UK.

The results indicate that those working within UK HEIs are concerned with the complexity of the current OA policy landscape and are frustrated with the inertia within the current system, which has resulted in higher costs, further publisher restrictions, and has not addressed the underlying tensions in academic culture.

The UK-SCL is seen by its initiators as a way to achieve further transition towards OA and take back some element of control of the content produced at their institutions.

The study concludes by modelling the ways in which the UK-SCL is intended to impact relationships between key stakeholders, and discussing possible implementation futures.

URL : The UK Scholarly Communication Licence: Attempting to Cut through the Gordian Knot of the Complexities of Funder Mandates, Publisher Embargoes and Researcher Caution in Achieving Open Access

Alternative location : http://www.mdpi.com/2304-6775/6/3/31

The End of a Centralized Open Access Project and the Beginning of a Community-Based Sustainable Infrastructure for Latin America: Redalyc.org after Fifteen Years The Open Access ecosystem in Latin America

Authors : Arianna Becerril-García, Eduardo Aguado-López

The Latin American region has an ecosystem where the nature of publication is conceived as the act of making public, of sharing and not as the publishing industry. International, national and institutional contexts have led to a redefinition of a project—Redalyc.org—that begun in 2003 and that has already fulfilled its original mission: give visibility to knowledge generated in Latin America and promote quality of scientific journals.

Nevertheless, it is mandatory to be transformed from a Latin American platform based in Mexico into a community-based regional infrastructure that continues assessing journals quality and providing access to full-text in benefit of journals visibility and free access to knowledge.

A framework that generates technology in favor of the empowerment and professionalization of journal editors, making the editorial task in open access sustainable and that allows Redalyc to sustain itself collectively.

This work describes the first Redalyc’s model, presents the problematic in course and the new business model Redalyc is designing and adopting to operate on.

URL : https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01816693