As uncanny — to some — as it may seem, the scholarly publishing world will soon be entering its third decade of cohabitation with the Open Access movement. The Budapest OA Initiative dates from February 2002. And a year from now, in October 2023, the milestone of 20 years since the issuance of the Berlin Declaration will be reached. We’ve all of us — authors, publishers, readers and others —learned to live within what might reasonably be described as a modest little revolution in publishing.
On a personal note, and IIRC, not long after reading about the Berlin Declaration, I prepared a report for my management about ‘this new OA thing.’ I estimated, conservatively, that at 5% of total published articles, OA would become a significant feature of the scientific and scholarly publishing landscape. And, speculating wildly, I thought that, should ever it reach 10% or above, that fact would have a palpable revenue impact on publishers. According to a conservative estimate, we’re up to around 30% these days* such that I feel pretty good about those old crystal-ball guesses.
* Such estimates vary by what you count, and how you count. So, see also the higher estimate at: “The effect of data sources on the measurement of open access” (PLOS One, 2022)
Below, I’ve highlighted a few recent articles about OA which have caught my attention; and I’ve updated my list of must-read OA resources.
Articles indicating trends in OA:
- A must-read round-up of industry reactions and responses to the August 28 ‘Nelson Memo’ from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy: “The New OSTP Memo: A Roundup of Reactions and an Interview Preview”
- An article at SpringerLink asks, “Should open access lead to closed research? The trends towards paying to perform research”
- According to this piece from Illinois State University, Open datasets continue to grow in importance
- Over at Scholarly Kitchen, A.J. Boston peers into the future and asks about Open Access and the Direction Moving Forward
- Nature reports on a poll showing increased support for OA publishing among US Faculty Members
Go-to resources for staying current on OA topics and developments:
- EurekaAlert! from AAAS covers the OA news well and objectively. I use the Advanced Search option on this site to filter for articles about “open access” “reports and proceedings” from the “scientific community” and get a few “must reads” each week.
- The Conversation regularly updates on the landscape of Open Access.
- Cambridge University Press has published an 8-page booklet : “A Guide to Open Access at Cambridge,” which serves as a basic overview of the concept and some of its core applications in academia.
- Peter Suber’s/Harvard’s Open Access Tracking Project (OATP) provides a —free-to-subscribe— daily news feed of developments in OA-land.
- The Directory of Open Access Journals is exactly what its name suggests.
- Similarly well-described, and equally useful, is the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA).
- “A History of the Open Access Movement” is published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory; the Wikipedia entry on the History of OA is also very useful for its many references.
- The Scholarly Kitchen blog, which many of us here at CCC read every morning, has published many articles on OA over the years. On the specific sub-topic of Transformative Agreements, this article is especially good reading : “Transformative Agreements: A Primer
- This helpful explanatory video on OA is accessible at the Open Society Foundations site.
Related or affiliated initiatives:
- Open Educational Resources
- Open data repositories
- Open-source software
- Open licensing (Creative Commons)