Echoes of England — European Commission Backs Open Access by 2014 in Statement 2012-07-19


“In a move suggesting considerable coordination, the European Commission has announced its support for open access (OA) publishing solutions for all its member states. The statement, coming fast on the heels of a nearly identical mandate from the UK, is only a statement, unlike the RCUK mandate that was announced earlier this week. However, it mirrors the UK statement in many specifics, including proposed embargo times for various types of research... European Commission plans outline either funding for author fees for Gold OA, or deposit of papers after an embargo in an open repository (six months for everything but humanities and economics journals, a distinction I still shake my head at). One such repository could be the EU’s OpenAIRE... Rational economics suggests that when a large and well-funded sponsor steps forward offering to pay for you to get your work done, you rationally transfer all your costs to them. Publishers know what it costs to do what we do. Policymakers seem to believe the OA line that online makes it all cheap and cheerful. Therefore, both the EU and UK groups believe that publishing costs will fall dramatically. I don’t see this as necessarily true. The disconnect we may see over the coming years as these mandates warp our businesses will, I think, be financial. Right now, most ‘gold OA’ is achieved on the backs of subscription models, either through embargoed subsidies (the costs of delayed Gold OA are mostly recouped during the current 12-month embargo) or through indirect subsidy (the subscription part of a business does well enough to support some OA publishing) or through environmental venue-shifting (I publish my minor works in OA journals with low prestige, saving my better works for subscription journals with high prestige). If you know of one, please tell me about a high-prestige OA journal that doesn’t need some type of cross-subsidization, and what it charges authors... the financial battles over what it really costs to go ‘all in’ on OA may be pitched, and rather surprising. Nature’s estimate of US$10,000 may prove to be low, and with research funding the only targeted budget line for OA fees, we are tapping an artery. Also, secondary filtering services may prove to be where the smart money goes, as the core literature will become impossible to navigate as it becomes more and more like the current government repositories few use and fewer value. In an effort to give something to people who aren’t really demanding it and to cut costs in one ancillary area (libraries) by creating expenses in a core area (research), policymakers in Europe seem to be shooting themselves in the foot. But given their recent track record on austerity, LIBOR, and other matters financial, should we really be all that surprised that they’d also hurt a major European industry, misallocate research dollars to publishing, and deflate the overall economy even more?”



08/16/2012, 06:08

From feeds:

Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) »

Tags: oa.business_models oa.publishers oa.comment oa.mandates oa.libraries oa.costs oa.prestige oa.librarians oa.hybrid oa.funders oa.fees oa.embargoes oa.rcuk oa.funds oa.openaire oa.horizon2020 oa.europe oa.repositories oa.policies oa.journals



Date tagged:

07/19/2012, 15:05

Date published:

07/19/2012, 15:52