Developing a new OA funding model called Subscribe to Open (S2O) - OA week 2018

It's OA week once more - time to offer up my annual personal perspective because for me, this week represents eleven years of commitment to our collective efforts to liberate knowledge. 

This time last year, nonprofit Annual Reviews (where I work, following stints at PLOS and Nature) was about to launch Knowable Magazine under a CC license to broaden the reach of our expert reviews. This new kid on the schol comm bloc has gone from strength to strength and is regularly republished in the Washington Post among other illustrious titles. 

Today feels like a good moment to explain a new OA funding model that we're developming at Annual Reviews - called Subscribe to Open (S20). It will be introduced for a pilot subset of its journals for 2020. This program maintains existing library relationships and payments, with subscription revenue used to publish journals OA

The conventional business model that supports OA to many original research articles, the APC (Article Processing Charge), is not applicable to review content because it is invited. We can’t ask someone to write a review, no small undertaking, and also ask them or their institutions to pay for the privilege! Additionally, our content is not the primary output of grant funded research, rather we synthesize it. Therefore it does not fall under OA mandates. 

The key features of Subscribe to Open for library participation include:

  • A commitment to OA for a key scholarly resource;
  • Financial incentives for institutions to participate;
  • A sustainable long-term plan for OA journal publication; and
  • A process consistent with institutional procurement

A very happy OA week to one and all! 

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