APCs comparisons among different publishers in 2019


This post features 4 comparisons between publishers and sub-publishers of fully open access journals that are included in our longitudinal APC study. Traditional publisher Wolters Kluwer owns two sub-publishers (or imprints). Wolters Kluwer Medknow journals tend not to charge APCs, and have low prices when they do charge. Wolters Kluwer Lippincott journals tend to charge, and prices are high. Indonesian-based Universitas Negeri Semerang is now one of the world’s largest OA journal publishers by the number of journals and appears to be new to online publishing using open-source software. Very few of their journals have APCs. The traditional Oxford University Press tends to have APCs, and their APCs are more than twice as high as a new UK-based not-for-profit OA journal publisher, Ubiquity Press. MDPI and Hindawi are very similar, both are fairly new, APC based commercial OA journal publishers; but Hindawi’s average APC is 44% higher than MDPIs. To understand the economics of OA journal publishing, it is necessary to take into account the strategies of particular publishers and even sub-publishers.

Research Question: are publishers and sub-publishers of fully open access journals pursuing observably different strategies with respect to publication fees (charging / non-charging, pricing strategies).

Method: 4 pairs of publishers or sub-publishers (imprints) were selected for comparison using the data from OA Main 2019, based on what appear to be differences in approach by publishers that are otherwise similar: Wolters Kluwer’s Medknow (India-based, OA in origin) & Lippincott (U.S. based, traditional subscriptions in origin); university-based publishers Universitas Negeri Semarang (Indonesia) & University of Oxford (U.K.); University of Oxford & Ubiquity (both U.K. based, traditional subscriptions v. OA origin) and MDPI & Hindawi (both commercial, OA in origin based on the APC model). Status of fully OA journals published by each publisher was compared, focusing on the tendency to charge (or not) and the amount of APC for charging journals.


1.Wolters Kluwer Medknow & Lippincott

Wolters Kluwer is one of the world’s oldest commercial scholarly publishers, having been established in 1836 in the Netherlands, where the company’s global headquarters is still located (Wolters Kluwer,2019a).

After acquiring Medknow in 2011, Wolters Kluwer focuses on develop strategic partnerships and leverage global brand and strengthen go-to-market (Wolters Kluwer,2019a). However, in Wolter Kluwer 2019 half-year financial report says: “Recurring revenues accounted for 80% of total revenues and grew 5% organically (HY 2018: 5%). Recurring revenues include subscriptions and other renewing revenue streams”. In the report, they also publish their major revenue (85.5%) comes from digital and service subscription and open access APC does not show as a certain type of revenues below (Wolters Kluwer,2019b).

Chart 1. Wolters Kluwer 2019 Half-Year financial Report

Medknow & Lippincott are different sub-publishers (imprints) belonging to Wolters Kluwer.

In 2019, Wolters Kluwers Medknow publishes 527 journals among which 99 journals (18.8%) have an APC, over half of journals do not charge a publication fee (66.6%). It is also important to notice that a few journals are redirecting to risky URL which is concerning as there are chances, it has been stolen by some other company (Avasthi, N & Morrison, H, 2019). Among the 99 journals with an APC that were studied, the highest APC is 1,500 USD and the minimal price is 9 USD. The average APC is 200 USD per article and, the most common publication fee (mode) is 150 USD per article.

2019 APC Wolters Kluwers Medknow website

For Wolters Kluwers Lippincott’s fully OA journals, over two-thirds of its journals (71.9%) have a publication fee. Among the 23 journals, the average APC is 1,756 USD per article, the range of APC (article proceeding cost) starts from 1,000 USD to 2,250 USD, and most common APC (mode) is 1,500 USD per article.
Compare to Medknow, Lippincott has a much higher average APC. Lippincott’s average publication fee is almost 9 times the average of Medknow which is 200 USD. A lower standard deviation of Medknow indicates that the publication fees tend to be close to the mean (200 USD) of the set, while a high standard deviation of Lippincott indicates that the publication fees are spread out over a wider range.

2019 APC Wolters Kluwers Lippincott website

2. Universitas Negeri Semarang & University of Oxford

Oxford University Press is one of the oldest scholarly publishers officially established in 1668. From the late 1800s, Oxford University Press began to expand significantly and makes most of its revenue from subscription and book sales.

Universitas Negeri Semarang , it appears to be fairly new to online publishing; in DOAJ the first year of online publication is 2009 or later for all the journals (column IO). Most of the journals appear to be published in Indonesian and/or English. The platform used is OJS – open source journal publishing software developed by the Public Knowledge Project. In other words, we have contrasted a very old, traditional, UK-based publisher with a new approach. (Note the size of OA journal publishing by UNS – see Appendix A.)

Universitas Negeri Semarang, based in Indonesia, is among the largest fully open access publishers with 96 journals. According to DOAJ webpage, Indonesia becomes the second largest country of publisher by number of journals ( see Appendix B.) and Indonesian rupiah becomes the 6th among all the original currencies for OA journals which accounts for 1.86%. The University of Oxford is a very well-known traditional scholarly publisher. These two university publishers have different approaches to APC. After comparing these two publishers we found Universitas Negeri Semarang has no publication fee for 88.5% of its journals while the University of Oxford has a fee for 80.3% of its fully open access journals.

3. University of Oxford and Ubiquity

As mentioned before, Oxford University Press is one of the oldest scholarly publishers which has a rich history which can be traced back to the earliest days of printing.

Ubiquity Press as an open access publisher of peer-reviewed academic journals and books was founded by researchers at University College London (UCL) in 2012. As a highly cost-efficient press, it provides access to the platform to give universities and societies the infrastructure and services they need to run their own presses through the Ubiquity Partner Network and allow societies to earn income from open access.

The average price of Ubiquity journals that only charge in GBP is 469 GBP (596 USD) and the most common price among those journals (mode) is 300 GBP (381 USD). The average price of Oxford University Press journals that only charge in GBP is 4543 GBP (5769 USD) and the most common price among those journals (mode) is 1250 GBP (1587 USD). The chart below shows the differences between Ubiquity and Oxford University Press on the APC that charged in GBP.

The overall average APC of Ubiquity journals that have a fee is 577 USD while the overall average APC of the University of Oxford is 1,549 USD. The average APC difference between these two publishers is 972 USD.

2019 APC Ubiquity publisher website

4.MDPI and Hindawi

Hindawi is one of the world’s largest publishers of peer-reviewed, fully Open Access journals. Built on an ethos of openness, it works with the global academic community to promote open scholarly research to the world. Based in institutions around the globe, it focuses on serving authors while preserving robust publishing standards and editorial integrity.

MDPI has supported academic communities since 1996 as a non-profit institute for the promotion and preservation of the diversity of chemical compounds. Based in Basel, Switzerland, MDPI has the mission to foster open scientific exchange in all forms, across all disciplines.
Mr. Dietrich Rordorf joined MDPI as Dr. Shu-Kun Lin’s assistant in August 2005. As an experiment, a modified version of the online submission and editorial system based on the Open Journals System (http://pkp.sfu.ca/ojs/) was launched by Dietrich for IJMS. Nowadays, MDPI has become the 7th largest publisher in number of articles published in 2018, and the largest publisher of open access articles in DOAJ in 2018.

MDPI and Hindawi charge fees for all the journals they published in 2019. However, their publication fees are different as the charts show below. Even though the highest APC are quite close for both publisher (2,049 USD for MDPI and 2,300 USD for Hindawi), the average APC for MDPI is 822 USD and 1,186 USD for Hindawi. We can also see the difference through mode. The most common price of Hindawi is 950 USD per article (Shi, A., 2019) while the most most common APC for MDPI journals is 350 CHF (359 USD) in 2019.

Cite as: Shi, A & Morrison, H. (2019). APCs comparisons among different publishers in 2019. Sustaining the knowledge https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2019/11/26/apcs-comparisons-among-different-publishers-in-2019/


Morrison, H. (2018). MDPI 2019: price increases, some hefty, and more coming in July. Sustaining the knowledge https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2019/02/13/mdpi-2019-price-increases-some-hefty-and-more-coming-in-july/
Avasthi, N & Morrison, H. (2019). Medknow 2019 – is this the best for India? Sustaining the Knowledge commons. https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2019/11/23/medknow-2019-is-this-the-best-for-india/
Shi, A. (2019). Hindawi APC comparison 2018-2019. Sustaining the knowledge https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2019/11/05/hindawi-apc-comparison-2018-2019/
Brutus, W. (2015). Oxford Open: Increased the Number of Open Access Journal. Sustaining the knowledge https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2016/11/17/oxford-open-increased-the-number-of-open-access-journal/
Pasha, H. (2019). Open Access in 2019: Original currencies for article processing charge. Sustaining the knowledge https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2019/11/26/open-access-in-2019-original-currencies-for-article-processing-charge/
Pasha, H. (2018). Medknow in 2018: growing fast! Sustaining the knowledge https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2018/12/13/medknow-in-2018-growing-fast/
Hindawi (2019). About Hindawi. Retrieved Nov. 19, 2019 from https://about.hindawi.com/
MDPI (2019). Overview. Retrieved Nov. 19, 2019 from https://www.mdpi.com/about
Wolters Kluwer (2019)a. Our heritage. Retrieved Nov. 19, 2019 from https://wolterskluwer.com/company/about-us/our-heritage
Wolters Kluwer (2019)b. Wolters Kluwer 2019 Half-Year Report. Retrieved Nov. 19, 2019 from https://wolterskluwer.com/binaries/content/assets/wk/pdf/investors/press-releases/2019.07.31-wolters-kluwer-2019-half-year-report.pdf
Ubiquity Press (2019). About Ubiquity Press. Retrieved Nov. 19, 2019 from https://www.ubiquitypress.com/site/about-general/

Appendix A

Publishers in DOAJ in descending order of number of journals

As of Nov. 19, 2019, Universitas Negeri Semarang is the 12th largest publisher by number of journals listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

Elsevier (339)
BMC (328)
Sciendo (326)
Hindawi Limited (238)
SpringerOpen (202)
Wolters Kluwer Medknow Publications (194)
MDPI AG (191)
SAGE Publishing (165)
Taylor & Francis Group (163)
Wiley (109)
Dove Medical Press (103)
Universitas Negeri Semarang (90)

Appendix B

Country of publisher in DOAJ in descending order of number of journals

As of Nov. 21, 2019, Indonesia becomes the second largest country of publisher by number of journals listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

United Kingdom (1,609)
Indonesia (1,565)
Brazil (1,445)
Spain (755)
United States (741)
Poland (619)
Iran, Islamic Republic of (511)
Turkey (404)
Italy (387)
Russian Federation (367)

Hindawi APC comparison 2018-2019


481 Hindawi journals were analyzed. 226 (47%) journals published at some point from 2010 – 2019 have ceased publication, 7 cannot be found on the Hindawi website anymore and 1 has been transferred to another publisher. In 2019, there are 247 journals actively publishing on the Hindawi website. All the journals are charging APCs. The average price is 1186.44 USD, an increase of 14% over the 2018 APC (1040.30 USD). Compared to the US inflation rate for 2018 of 2.44%(“U.S. Inflation Rate 1960-2019” n.d.), the publication fee rises more than 5 times. Among active journals, 17% of the 217 journals did not change in price; 30% journals decreased their price while more than half (53%) of the journals increased price. The amount of price increase starts from 25 USD up to 1350 USD. 14 journals appear to have switched from “no fee” to “fee”, with different APCS from 750 USD to 1350 USD.

Most journals that not found on the website in 2018 now been illustrated ceased on the web page with the specific ceased year and where to find previous publication articles which could be good practice for authors who are trying to find the latest information about specific journals. it also benefits other publishers to follow the lead.


Table 1: 2019 Hindawi Journal Publication and APC status summary

Hindawi has 481 journals in 2019. Among these journals, 226 of them were reported ceased on Hindawi’s website. In 2018, most of the ceased journals cannot be found in the website but they have been specified on the webpage about when this journal is ceased and where can readers find previous articles published in the journal. This is a good practice. Here is a example of one of the ceased title.

screenshot from Hindawi website

Price changes 2018-2019

Hindawi has 232 active journals listed on its website in 2018. In 2019, there are 247 journals actively publishing on the Hindawi website. There are 15 journals that cannot be found on the website now can be searched which represents a 6.47% increase in journal numbers of Hindawi.

The average publication fee we found from the Hindawi’s website in 2018 is 1040.30 USD. There are 14 journals that had no publication fee in 2018 in contrast with no journals with no publication fee in 2019 and for most journals the publication fee is 1000 USD per article. The range of APC (article proceeding cost) starts from no publication fee which is zero to 2250 USD.

This average takes into account the 15 journals’ APC for the year 2019. This year, the majority of journals have a publication fee of 950 USD per article. Obviously, every journal found on the Hindawi website does have a publication fee from this year. The minimum cost is 650 USD up to 2300 USD. Graph 1 and Graph 2 below shows the frequency of APC for different prices in two years.

Table 2 2018 & 2019 Hindawi active titles APC status summary

Graph 1: price distribution for 2018

Graph 2: price distribution for 2019

Of the 247 journals total:

  • 15 “new” journals are added in 2019 (including in 2019 overall analysis but not 2018-2019 change analysis)
  • Journals with status: no publication fee coded as 0 in change analysis.

Total journals included in the price change analysis:

  • 2019 overall: 232
  • 2018-2019 comparison: 217

Of the 217 titles, as illustrated in the chart and table below, a majority of these journals (53%) increased in prices in USD from 2018 to 2019, while a third (30%) decreased in price and a few (17%) did not change in price.

For the 116 journals that increased in price, the increases in percentages ranged from 2.22% to 95% (slightly under double in price).

Among the 65 journals with APC price decreases, the drop in percentage ranged from 5% to 24%.

Working dataset : https://sustainingknowledgecommons.files.wordpress.com/2019/11/hindawi-analysis_2019_prep_version-0.xlsx

Cite as: Shi, A. (2019). Hindawi APC comparison 2018-2019. Sustaining the knowledge commons. https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2019/11/05/hindawi-apc-comparison-2018-2019/

Selected previous posts on Hindawi:
Morrison, H. (2018). Recent APC price changes for 4 publishers (BMC, Hindawi, PLOS, PeerJ). Sustaining the knowledge commonshttps://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2018/04/13/recent-apc-price-changes-for-4-publishers-bmc-hindawi-plos-peerj/
In brief: Hindawi April 2016 – November 2017: mixed picture, price increases a bit concerning
Brutus, W. (2017). Hindawi: comparaison 2016 – 2017. Soutenir les savoirs communshttps://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2017/04/22/hindawi-comparaison-2016-2017/
In brief: French – highlights: the mode (most common APC) was $600 USD in 2016, $1,000 in 2017
Salhab, J. (2016). Hindawi publisher: 2016 findings and longitudinal comparison of APC rates. Sustaining the knowledge commonshttps://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2016/04/27/hindawi-publisher-2016-findings-and-longitudinal-comparison-of-apc-rates/
​In brief: Hindawi previously used a strategy of rotating free publication in journals, mentioned in this post; the most common APC in both 2015 and 2016 was $600; comparing 2010 and 2016 data, we see a mixed picture with some prices increasing and others decreasing.
Salhab, J. & Morrison, H. (2015). Who is served by for-profit gold open access publishing? A case study of Hindawi and Egypt. Sustaining the knowledge commonshttps://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2015/04/10/who-is-served-by-for-profit-gold-open-access-publishing-a-case-study-of-hindawi-and-egypt/
Highlights: as reported by Poynder (2012), Ahmed Hindawi, (from Egypt) founder of Hindawi, confirmed a revenue of millions of dollars from APCs alone – a $3.3 net profit on $12 million in revenue, a 28% profit rate. Hindawi is highly regarded as a leading reputable open access publisher. This commercial Egyptian success story is contrasted with high APC for the most prestigious journals and English-language- only journals that suggest that this approach is not helpful for Egypt’s researchers.


“U.S. Inflation Rate 1960-2019.” n.d. Accessed October 31, 2019 from https://www.macrotrends.net/countries/USA/united-states/inflation-rate-cpi

Poynder, R. (2012).The OA interviews: Ahmed Hindawi, founder of Hindawi Publishing Corporation. Retrieved March 10, 2015 from http://www.richardpoynder.co.uk/Hindawi_Interview.pdf

Cite as:

Shi, A. (2019). Hindawi APC comparison 2018-2019. Sustaining the Knowledge Commons. Retrieved from https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2019/11/05/hindawi-apc-comparison-2018-2019/


Recent APC price changes for 4 publishers (BMC, Hindawi, PLOS, PeerJ)

Following is a summary of recent APC changes for 4 publishers, prepared on request but posted in case this might be of interest to anyone else. In brief, each publisher appears to be following a different pricing strategy ranging from flat pricing over many years with one rare exception, to a tenfold increase from 2016 – 2017.

BioMedCentral: mixed picture

• 269 journals with numeric data 2017 and 2018 (April 4 sampling date both years)
• 20 with price increases of 2% – 83% (30 – 620 GBP)
• 5 with price decreases of 1% – 15% (15 – 205 GBP)
• Of interest: 25 journals with no publication fee (appears to be society / university sponsorship)
• Of concern: 44 journals with “title not found”: some will reflect earlier title drop

Hindawi April 2016 – November 2017: mixed picture, price increases a bit concerning

• 281 journals with numeric data for 2016 and 2017 (including 0 = free for now*)
• 99 journals have price increases ranging from 14 – 108% (100% = price has doubled), increases of 250 – 650 USD
• 115 journals have no change in pricing
• 45 journals have price decreases of 6 – 25%, 50 – 100 USD
• Of interest: 230 Predecessor journals (ISRN series): good practice
• Of concern: 186 title not found (not limited to 2017), excluding predecessor

*Rotating free journals: 5 of the 281 journals were free in 2016; 1 is still free, the other 4 have APCs of 1250 – 1750 USD. 17 journals that had an APC in 2016 were free in 2017. Paul Peters sent an e-mail explaining this strategy a few years ago.

PLOS ONE: flat pricing with one exception
From 2014 – 2018, there has been only one price change for PLOS journals: PLOS ONE was $1,350 USD in 2014 and is $1,495 USD today. The sample date was December 2017, a visual scan confirms the same prices are in effect as of April 13, 2018.

PeerJ: tenfold price increase from 2016 – 2017 (99 USD – 1,095 USD); new journal PeerJ Computer Science is 895 USD.

See also yesterday’s post Frontiers: 40% of journals have price increases from 18 – 31%.

Cite as:

Morrison, H. (2018). Recent APC price changes for 4 publishers (BMC, Hindawi, PLOS, PeerJ). Sustaining the Knowledge Commons / Soutenir Les Savoirs Communs. Retrieved from https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2018/04/13/recent-apc-price-changes-for-4-publishers-bmc-hindawi-plos-peerj/


Hindawi: comparaison 2016-2017


L’éditeur Hindawi avait en 2016, 406 titres de revues alors qu’en 2017 il y a 339 titres de revues.Il y avait donc 76 revues qui était disponible en 2016 mais qui ne le sont plus en 2017. Cela représente près de 25 % et inclus une série complète

La moyenne des frais de publication en 2016 est de 802$ .Il y a cinq revues qui n’ont aucun frais publication en 2016 et pour la majorité des journaux les frais publication sont de 600 $ par article.

Tableau de la distribution des prix pour 2016

Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 4.48.31 PM

En 2017 on remarque une augmentation de la moyenne des prix à 922$. Cette moyenne prend compte des nouvelles revues pour l’année de 2017 qui sont au nombre de 9. Cette année, la majorité des revues possèdent des frais de publication de 1000$ par article.

Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 4.50.48 PM

La moyenne des titres qui sont restés inchangés entre 2016 et 2017 est de 910 $ et en moyenne, il y a une hausse de 0.13% des frais de publication.

Des revues qui existaient en 2016 et 2017, on peut remarquer que des 330 revues, il y a 65 revues dont les frais de publication ont diminués. Il y a donc près de 20% des publications d’Hindawi. De plus on remarque pour une grande majorité des revues les frais sont restés les mêmes. Soit 41% des titres n’ont pas augmenté. Avec ces chiffres nous pouvons déduire que seulement 39% de titres de cet éditeur ont subit une augmentation de leurs frais de publication.

Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 4.54.55 PM.png

En conclusion, les prix pour cette maison d’édition ont dans la majorité des cas resté les même et que certaines revues ont même baissé leur frais de publication. Cependant, il faut noter le fais de certaine publication ont tout de meme augmenté puisque le mode en 2016 était de 600$ et qu’il est  passée à 1000$. Le mode est la valeur la plus réprésenter de la répartition. Dans l’ensemble,les prix reste stable.

Citation: Brutus, W. (2017). Hindawi: Comparaison 2016-2017. Sustaining the Knowledge Commons / Soutenir Les Savoirs Communs. Retrieved from https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2017/04/22/hindawi-comparaison-2016-2017/

Hindawi APC: Le site web d’Hindawi versu le répertoire du DOAJ

Résumé :

Le répertoire du DOAJ (Directory of open access) recense les informations des diverses revues savantes disponibles en libre-accès. Hindawi est une maison d’édition dont ses revues sont répertoriées dans ce répertoire. L’information dans le DOAJ est contradictoire comparée à celle du Hindawi, on y retrouve 566 titres de revues tandis que le site web d’Hindawi en indique 339.

On remarque que 59 % des revues dans le DOAJ ne sont plus publiés par l’éditeur et 64 titres qui sont sur le site web de l’éditeur ne sont pas dans le catalogue du DOAJ. Les informations collectées par le DOAJ ne sont pas à jour pour la majorité des titres répertoriés.

Objectif :

Le but de cette collecte de données est d’examiner l’exactitude des titres et des frais de traitement des articles  qui sont indiqué dans le répertoire des revues en libre accès et sur le site web de l’éditeur Hindawi.


Dans un premier temps, le 31 janvier 2017 nous avons effectué une copie d’écran de l’information contenue dans le site web de l’éditeur Hindawi. L’objectif est de comparer l’information contenue dans le DOAJ pour les titres des revues et les frais de publication afin de voir si elles sont bonnes. Ces informations une fois collectées, elles ont été consignées dans un fichier Excel afin d’effectuer une comparaison entre l’information fournie par l’éditeur et le répertoire.


Nombre de revues

Premièrement, il y a 339 revues dans le site web d’Hindawi et le DOAJ indique 566 publications pour cet éditeur.

Il y a 227 titres de périodiques indiqués dans le DOAJ qui ne sont peut-être plus publiés de l’éditeur. Alors que 64 titres de revues publiées par Hindawi ne sont pas mentionnés le répertoire du DOAJ.

De plus, il n’y a aucune indication sur le site web qui indique que ces périodiques ne sont plus disponibles. Des 328 revues répertoriées dans le DOAJ, 59 % ne sont plus publiés.

La série ISRN est encore indiquée dans le répertoire du DOAJ, alors que Hindawi a décidé de publier cette série dans une revue qui s’intitule International Scholarly Research Notices


Le tableau qui suit démontre le nombre compare le nombre de revues qui sont inscrites dans le répertoire et ceux indiqué sur le site web d’Hindawi

Hindawi DOAJ
Numéro de revues 339 566
# avec APC 335* 432**
  • *Ces quatre revues n’ont pas de frais pour l’année 2017 donc pour l’année 2017 les auteurs pourront publier sans payer de frais
  • * Pour les autres titres, le répertoire n’indique aucune information

Pour ce qui est de l’exactitude, des prix ont peu noté quelque différence dans l’information rapportée par l’éditeur et le répertoire.

Pour ce qui des prix, dans la majorité des cas les prix indiqués dans le DOAJ sont largement inférieur que les prix de l’éditeur la moyenne de la différence de prix est de 151 $ plus élevé dans le site web de l’éditeur que du répertoire

Il y a 33 revues où les prix indiqués sont les mêmes dans le site de l’éditeur que dans le répertoire. Donc seulement 9 % des périodiques affichent le même prix sur le site web de l’éditeur.

Pour 45 revues, le prix affiché dans le répertoire est plus élevé que pour l’éditeur. Pour la majorité des titres, la différence de prix dans le répertoire affiche un prix qui est supérieur de 50 $.

Pour 144 revues les prix affichés dans le DOAJ sont largement inférieurs au prix de l’éditeur. Ce nombre tient compte des titres pour lesquels il existe de l’information sur le site de l’éditeur et dans le DOAJ.

On peut remarquer des hausses de prix sur le site web d’Hindawi qui peut aller jusqu’à 66 %. Il s’agit d’une hausse importante. La plus haute augmentation des frais de publication est une hausse de 108 %. Donc pour certaines revues les frais de publication ont plus que doublé. Il s’agit en effet d’une hausse considérable

En bref, les informations collectées par le DOAJ ne sont pas à jour que ce soit pour les titres ou les prix. Une grande majorité des informations est contradictoire et même fausse.


Le répertoire de DOAJ affiche de l’information sur son site web concernant différents éditeurs qui ont des ressources en libre accès. Ce que j’ai pu constater avec l’éditeur Hindawi, c’est qu’il y a beaucoup d’information contradictoire sur le site web de DOAJ.


Brutus, W. (2017). Hindawi APC: Le site web d’Hindawi versu le répertoire du DOAJ. Sustaining the Knowledge Commons / Soutenir Les Savoirs Communs. Retrieved from https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2017/03/14/hindawi-apc-le-site-web-dhindawi-versu-le-repertoire-du-doaj/



27 Hindawi titles active in 2015, not found in 2016

The following 27 titles were available on the Hindawi website in 2015 but are not found on the publisher’s website as of 2016. As of May 2015, Hindawi listed about 408 active titles. This is a substantial journal attrition rate of 7% in less than a year. In theory, the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) eliminates journals no longer active (more on DOAJ versus actual titles below). On surface, this seems like a good idea – but what about the many authors whose works become less visible because DOAJ has de-listed their journal? I do not think that this is a good practice for OA. DOAJ should have a means of indicating that a journal is inactive and continue to make journals and their content available and visible whenever possible. Until this is sorted out, this possibility is one of the reasons I argue that authors should always self-archive their work as open access, even when publishing in open access journals, and why funding agencies and universities should insist on archiving in open access policy.

Journals listed in Hindawi APC site in 2015 no longer visible as of February 2016

Advances in Anesthesiology
Advances in Biomaterials
Advances in Critical Care
Advances in Evolutionary Biology
Advances in Geology
Advances in Molecular Biology
Advances in Oceanography
Advances in Radiology
Advances in Regenerative Medicine
Conference Papers in Science
Developmental Biology Journal
International Journal of Chemical Physics
International Journal of Embryology
International Journal of Mineralogy
International Journal of Photochemistry
International Journal of Superconductivity
Journal of Aerodynamics
Journal of Calculus of Variations
Journal of Computational Environmental Sciences
Journal of Dental Surgery
Journal of Experimental Physics
Journal of Geochemistry
Journal of Mining
Journal of Probability
Journal of Viruses
Paleontology Journal
Structural Biology

More about DOAJ versus Hindawi OA journal lists

Our 2015 dataset (downloadable from the OA APC dataverse, described in MDPI’s Data journal) included 538 Hindawi titles. 130 of these were the then-obsolete ISRN series of journals. 538 – 130 = 408 journals, that’s how I calculated the total number of journals for 2015. The ISRN series, which has been obsolete for some time, was still included in the February 2016 DOAJ metadata. 28 titles are listed as current on the Hindawi website but were not indexed in DOAJ as of February 2016, of these 18 were on the Hindawi website with an APC as of 2015.

Cite as:

Morrison, H. (2016). 27 Hindawi titles active in 2015, not found in 2016. Sustaining the Knowledge Commons / Soutenir Les Savoirs Communs. Retrieved from https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2016/05/03/27-hindawi-titles-active-in-2015-not-found-in-2016/

Hindawi publisher: 2016 findings and longitudinal comparison of APC rates

Hindawi is an Open Access (OA) publisher that follows the business model of Article Processing Charges (APC) in all its journals. This publisher charges APC only in USD, and it is known to often merge journals and provide free publishing on a rotating basis.

Hindawi is listed as the largest OA publisher in DOAJ with 540 journals.  Despite the fact that it lists only 406 journals on its website, mainly as a result of merging 130 ISRN journals into one journal, Hindawi is still considered the largest OA publisher and therefore needs to be observed to gain insight into the future APC trends.

2015-2016 comparison

A total of 389 matching journals are compared in years 2015 and 2016. The median and mode remain the same. The average, however, witnesses an increase of USD 65.


When removing all journals that charge no-APC in both years, 286 journals are compared and the following observations are noted:
More than two-thirds of journals charged the same price in both years, about one-third increased their prices, but not a single journal witnessed a price decrease.


As to APC increase in 2016 (91 journals), the range noted is between 4% to 108%. The majority of journals charged 25% (30 journals), 33% (29 journals) and 67% (30 journals) respectively.


2015-2016: Rotating No-APC journals:

When examining the no-APC journals in both years, we found that 57 journals charged no-APC in 2015 whereas the number went down to 51 in 2016.  Only 5 journals charged no-APC in both years.

What is interesting, however, is not the number of journals per se, but rather the price increase for most of those journals in 2016. For example, in 2015, 28 out of 2016 no-APC journals charged USD 600 and only 11 charged USD 800. However when examining prices in 2016, we find that only 11 of 2015 no-APC journals charged USD 600, 35 charged USD 800 and that 7 journals went further to charge USD 1000.


Hindawi: Comparing years 2010 & 2016

Unlike 2015-2016 comparison that showed that APC has either increased or stayed the same, comparing the year 2010 to 2016 proves that APCs are not always tending towards higher prices. A total of 121 journals were compared in both years where 57 journals increased APC, 45 decreased APC and only 19 kept the same price.


Hindawi: 2010-2016:

To examine APC prices in years 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016, we compared also 121 matching journals.  The data shows that APC in 2010 was higher than all other years with an average of USD 799. However, unlike the sample from years 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 which include 41, 60, 17 and 13 no-APC journals respectively, the matching journals from 2010 does not include any no-APC journal. This explains the skewed distribution in years 2013 and 2014 with zero mode in both years. Nevertheless, the data shows that in this sample the APC used to be higher in 2010 than 2016 with an average of USD 799 compared to only USD 698 in 2016.


As we examine Hindawi APC pricing throughout the years, it is obvious that there is a lot of manipulation whether through price change or no-APC rotation policy.

Will Hindawi apply a gradual price increase while decreasing the number of no-APC journals as witnessed in years 2015-2016 or will it rather apply another round of huge shifts as in previous years? Here lies the importance of the longitudinal study in monitoring changes and hopefully predicting future practices.

Cite as:

Salhab, J. (2016). Hindawi publisher: 2016 findings and longitudinal comparison of APC rates. Sustaining the Knowledge Commons / Soutenir Les Savoirs Communs. Retrieved from https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2016/04/27/hindawi-publisher-2016-findings-and-longitudinal-comparison-of-apc-rates/


Who is served by for-profit gold open access publishing? A case study of Hindawi and Egypt

by: Jihane Salhab and Heather Morrison


The highly successful Egypt-based open access publisher Hindawi is presented as a model of quality publishing and commercial success. However, this success is not accompanied by obvious benefits to Egypt’s own research and researchers. Even in the best-case scenario for academics in Egypt’s public university system, it would take three month’s salary for a full professor to pay the $1,500 USD OA APC of Hindawi’s high-end Disease Markers. Egypt’s largest public university, Cairo University, has no institutional repository. Fortunately for Egyptian researchers, there are open access journals that do not charge APCs, and not all open access repositories are institutional repositories. Open access may not be the most salient issue for Egyptian researchers at any rate. It is not clear that the pre-revolutionary state interference with research detailed in a 2005 Human Rights Watch report has been resolved, and the need to take on other work due to low salaries leaves many academics with little to no time to do research. In this instance, commercial success is not correlated with social benefit.


Hindawi is an open access commercial publishing success story and an Egyptian business success story. Hindawi Publishing Corporation was founded by Ahmed Hindawi who, in an interview with Richard Poynder conducted in September 2012, confirmed a revenue of millions of dollars from APCs alone – a $3.3 net profit on $12 million in revenue, a 28% profit rate (Poynder, 2012). Hindawi is highly respected in open access publishing circles, and was an early leader in establishing the Open Access Scholarly Publishers’ Association (OASPA), an organization that takes quality in publishing seriously.

However, it seems highly unlikely that Egyptian researchers could afford to publish in the larger Hindawi journals. It would take three months’ salary for a full professor in today’s public university system to pay the $1,500 USD APC of Hindawi’s Disease Markers; this would take six months’ salary for a lecturer. This is the best-case scenario, assuming a university that has been able to implement the raise for academics decreed by Morsi in July 2012 to 3500 EGY monthly for a full professor ($579 USD) (1).

In addition to the financial factor, years of the pre-revolution regime’s interference with research subjects and methods formed a stagnant nature of contemporary scholarship where “the state restricts who can research what and severely punishes those who overstep their bounds” (Human Rights Watch, 46). Though there is a slight improvement after the revolution, still “economic, political, and physical insecurity in the country make it very difficult for serious changes to be made” (El-Awady, 2013).

There are other options for Egyptian researchers: the vast majority of open access journals do not charge article processing fees (Morrison et. al., 2015), there are subject as well as institutional open access repositories, and Egyptian researchers can read open access works of others. Still it might be reasonable to ask whether the most appropriate route to “open” in the short-term for researchers in Egypt involves opening up time to do the research through adequate salaries and opening up freedom to conduct and share research by building support for intellectual and academic freedom.


1. In July 2012, more than a year after the revolution that ousted the Mubarak regime, elected president Morsi issued decree 84, amending the wages for academics that had not been changed since 1972. Published on July 14th in the Egyptian Official Journal (issue 28), Decree 84 (translated from Arabic by Jihane Salhab). lists the amendments of academics’ monthly wages as follows: 3500 EGY ($579 US) for professors, 3000 EGY ($497 US) for associate professors, 2500 EGY ($414 US) for lecturers, 1500 EGY ($248 US) for assistant lecturers and 1000EGY ($165 US) for teaching assistants respectively (using XE currency converter for that same date at a rate of $1=6.045 EGY). That raise was supposed to be only the first phase, but in February 2013 Egyptian minister of higher education Mas’ad confirmed in a statement that no other phases would follow (Bedewi, 2013).


Bedewi, M. (24 February 2013). Higher education: the country cannot endure the second phase of ‘academic wages.’ Al-Youm Al-Sabe’ [In Arabic]. Retrieved on 10 April 2015.

El-Awady, Nadia. (8 June 2013). Higher education still suffering after the revolution. University World News. Retrieved March 28, 2015 from http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20130606161959301

Human Rights Watch (2005). Reading between the “Red Lines”: the repression of academic freedom in Egyptian universities. Human Rights Watch, 17(6): 1-109. Retrieved February 17, 2015 from http://www.hrw.org/reports/2005/egypt0605/egypt0605.pdf

Morrison H, Salhab J, Calvé-Genest A, Horava T (2015). Open Access Article Processing Charges: DOAJ Survey May 2014. Publications 3(1):1-16. Retrieved April 10, 2015 from http://www.mdpi.com/2304-6775/3/1/1

Poynder, R. (2012).The OA interviews: Ahmed Hindawi, founder of Hindawi Publishing Corporation. Retrieved March 10, 2015 from http://www.richardpoynder.co.uk/Hindawi_Interview.pdf

This post is the first in a series analyzing the actual or potential impact of APCs.

Cite as:

Salhab, J., & Morrison, H. (2015). Who is served by for-profit gold open access publishing? A case study of Hindawi and Egypt. Sustaining the Knowledge Commons / Soutenir Les Savoirs Communs. Retrieved from https://sustainingknowledgecommons.org/2015/04/10/who-is-served-by-for-profit-gold-open-access-publishing-a-case-study-of-hindawi-and-egypt/