Impact of Social Sciences – The benefits of open access books are clear but challenges around funding remain
ab1630's bookmarks 2018-05-03
"As part of Academic Book Week 2018, last week Springer Nature hosted an event exploring open access books featuring representatives from the researcher, funder, and publisher communities. Mithu Lucraft reports on the presentations and panel discussions which revealed that the benefits of publishing open access books are clear, with more downloads, citations, and online mentions, in addition to an extended international reach and improved prospects of research use and reuse. However, the obvious challenge to publishing open access books is funding, and so it is vital for publishers, funders and institutions to work together as a community to share costs and reduce them for researchers.
Do you know if your academic book is reaching the widest possible audience? Or how much usage, citations, or attention it has achieved? If you want to publish your book open access (OA) would you know where to access funds? Or what your funder requires? These were just some of the questions discussed at an event hosted by Springer Nature last week as part of Academic Book Week 2018. While open access has moved forward in journal publishing, for books it remains early days. OA books present their own opportunities and challenges compared with journals, many of which were explored in presentations and panel discussions.
The benefits of OA
From increased usage to reaching international audiences beyond academia, Ros Pyne, Head of Policy and Development (Open Research) at Springer Nature, shared lessons learned through publishing 500 OA books at Springer and Palgrave Macmillan. “The OA effect: how does open access affect the usage of scholarly books?”, a Springer Nature report from 2017, found that OA books receive on average seven times more downloads than non-OA books. Although the results only cover a four-year period, the data also showed that OA books receive 50% more citations compared to non-OA books; while in terms of online mentions, OA books gained ten times more mentions over a three-year period compared to non-OA books...."