OA APCs in 2016: average $840 USD, price skew at low end of range

Here is another early result from the 2016 OA APC project. Of the 3,282 journals for which we have APC data, the average is $840 USD, and the media $600, illustrating a skew towards the low end of the price range. That is to say, half of the APCs are below $600. Excluding journals with an APC of $0 (journals that clearly  use the APC model but are currently free to publish in), the average is $877 USD. This year’s average of $840 is $124 or 13% less than the average of $964 USD the team found in 2014. This finding should be interpreted with caution as pricing for specific journals may have increased substantially, with the global total offset by large numbers of journals that are small, new, or from the developing world with relatively lower APCs. The 3,282 journals are all journals for which we were able to confirm pricing and specify a particular APC. Journals using article page processing charges (APPC) are considered as a separate model and not included in this analysis. The full dataset and documentation are in progress.

The following chart and table illustrate the pricing by bands of $500.

OA APCs by price range in 500s.jpg

APC in USD by range by 500’s # of journals
0 – 500 1,486
501 – 1,000 739
1,001 – 1,500 278
1,501 – 2,000 599
2,001 – 2,500 101
2,501 – 3,000 33
3,001 – 3,500 10
3,501 – 4,000 26
4,001 – 4,500 5
4,501 – 5,000 2
5,001 – 5,250 2
Total (missing one) 3,281

OA journals study 2016: 65% free-to-publish

First result from the 2016 OA APC study: of the 12,060 journals for which we have data for 2016, 7,786 are free to publish in (noted free in Crawford (2016)*, plus no publication fee (SKC team)). 3,510 or 29% have a publication fee (APC or article page processing charge, cost specified or not specified). 404 or 3% were “cost not found”, i.e. we could not determine whether or not there is a cost associated with publishing. 343 or 3% were title not found (titles might be discontinued  or there could be technical issues with websites or connectivity). The 12,060 journals include journals whose publishers either are, or have been, listed in DOAJ, including titles from many publishers that are not currently listed in DOAJ. Dataset and detailed documentation are in progress.

oa-journals-fee-free-2016

* Thanks to Walt Crawford for providing open data for his Gold Open Access Jounals 2011-2016 dataset. Without this work it would not have been possible to expand the OA APC study from a sample of about a quarter of the journals listed in DOAJ to all of DOAJ and beyond. In particular, 7,040 of the journals confirmed as free to publish in are from Crawford’s work.

Crawford, W. (2016). Gold Open Access Journals 2011 – 2016. http://walt.lishost.org/2016/05/gold-open-access-journals-2011-2015-its-here/

Elsevier as an open access publisher

Just published:

Morrison, H. (2017). From the field: Elsevier as an open access publisher. The Charleston Advisor 18:3, pp. 53-59 doi https://doi.org/10.5260/chara.18.3.53

Abstract:

Highlights of this broad-brush case study of Elsevier’s Open Access (OA) journals as of 2016: Elsevier offers 511 fully OA journals and 2,149 hybrids. Most fully OA journals do not charge article processing charges (APCs). APCs of fully OA journals average $660 US ($1,731 excluding no-fee journals); hybrid OA averages $2,500. A practice termed author nominal copyright is observed, where copyright is in the name of the author although the author contract is essentially a copyright transfer. The prospects for a full Elsevier flip to OA via APC payments for articles going forward are considered and found to be problematic.

Save the date! April 1, 2017 all-day open access workshop at University of Ottawa

On Saturday, April 1, 2017, Sustaining the Knowledge Commons is co-sponsoring an all-day open access workshop at the University of Ottawa. The workshop, part of a new master’s-level special topics course on open access, ISI 6300, will be designed to facilitate conversation on emerging topics in open access and related areas, and will feature local and visiting scholars engaged in various open access initiatives and research in addition to student presentations. Presentations will be in French or English and discussion welcome in either language. Registration will be free but required.

Confirmed speakers to date:

Inma Aleixos Borrás. Visiting Scholar. Tentative topic. “European Commission policies on (research) Open Data”. Website: www.inmaaleixos.com

Victoria Volkanova. Visiting Librarian « Les pratiques de publication des chercheurs en milieu francophone minoritaire à l’ère numérique » (see the SKC About the Team page for bio info).

Susan Spronk. University of Ottawa – Faculty of Social Sciences & Editor, Studies in Political Economy.

Kyle Conway & Bill Crahere: The Digital Press @ University of North Dakota

Mary Francoli hhttps://carleton.ca/sjc/profile/francoli-mary/ Open government

Sponsors

École des Sciences de l’Information | School of Information Studies http://arts.uottawa.ca/sis/

The Association des étudiants en sciences de l’information / Information Studies Student Association (AÉSISSA) http://arts.uottawa.ca/sis/student-experience/student-association

University of Ottawa Digital Humanities | Université d’Ottawa Sciences Humaines Numériques http://www.uottawa.ca/academic/info/regist/calendars/programs/1731.html

Sustaining the Knowledge Commons | Soutenir les Savoirs Communs (SKC): sustainingknowledgecommons.org

Watch for further details as planning unfolds early in 2017.

The workshop is part of a special topics class on open access, ISI 6300. An early draft of the course outline is available here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B5n66wofwO7ackhZaE9aaXo3d3M/view

Oxford Open: Increased the Number of Open Access Journal

Oxford Open wants to distribute journals of high-quality research but to be able to publish the journal in the open access model. They do charge article processing fees for most of their journals. Oxford Open also has journals that the author can choose the open access option (hybrid journals), but for the purpose of our research, we only use the journal that is available fully in open access.

By collecting the information about the open-access journals I noticed that only 14 of their journals don’t have any processing charge and some of them don’t have them, but only for 2016.

 

Screen Shot 2016-11-17 at 11.40.15 AM.png

On their website I was able to collect 35 journal titles, the DOAJ only has 16. They seem to aim for more journals that will be available without fees for the user.

 

Screen Shot 2016-11-17 at 11.42.27 AM.png

In 2015 they had 11 journals and we sampled 5 of them. Only two have increased their price and the other three journals the price remained the same. The Journal DNA Research has increased the most of their processing fees in 2016. It has risen by 50%. However, the Nucleic Acids Research  has a rise they processing fees from 1400 GBP in 2015 to 1420 GBP in 2016.

 

Hikari- favor some disciplines?

Hikari is a publisher of journals in science, technology and medicine founded in 2005. They used to be in the DOAJ 2015, but in 2016 the publisher isn’t mentioned in the directory. The publisher didn’t change the amount of their OA APC. The majority of the journals still charge processing fees but they no longer charge publication fees in the fields of medicine and economics. This means that of their 20 journals, 4 of them no longer have publication fees. 25 percent of their journals have no publication fees. The journals that still have publication fees charge 200 EUR per page up to 8 pages and an extra 25 EUR per pages for the additional pages.

Medknow 2016: it’s complicated!

by Widlyne Brutus and Heather Morrison

Highlights

Medknow is an emerging commercial scholarly journal publisher based in the developing world (India) that is owned by one of the oldest and most traditional western-based commercial publishers, Wolters Kluwer, that publishes in partnership with many long-standing traditional society and university journals. Even though the publisher is for-profit by nature, the majority of journals do not charge APCs. Of the journals that do charge APCs, most have not changed price between 2015 and 2016; some journals are adding or dropping APCs, and a few have lowered their APC. However, we identified 16 journals that did raise APCs from 2015 to 2016, in some cases by substantial amounts (over 50%, some even doubling or tripling in price).

medknow-partnershipsmedknow-apc-split

Details

Medknow is a commercial publisher of peer-review medical journals that originated in India. This publisher has partnerships with many associations, societies and universities and its publications include many long-standing not-for-profit journals. Of the 141 journals published by Medknow, more than half (83 journals) are published in partnership with universities and learned societies.

A traditional commercial scholarly publisher, with a history dating back to 1836, Wolters Kluwer, acquired Medknow in 2011. The reason for mentioning this is as one example of how the distinction between traditional and open access publishers may not be as relevant today as it used to be.

The partnership with the not-for-profit societies and universities likely explains why less than half of Medknow journals (70 journals) charge an APC as of 2016 (an increase from 61 journals with APCs in 2015).

In 2016, there are 26 journals that clearly state that there is no processing charge, down from 28 journals in 2015. It is not always clear whether there is an APC or not. In 2016 we note 38 journals with no cost found (meaning we did not find either an APC or clear language stating that there is no APC), down slightly from 41 in 2015.

There 28 publication in 2015 that have no publication fees and in 2016 26 publication have no processing charge.

Widlyne compared the averages of the article processing charge for the year of 2015 and 2016.

The average in 2015 was $285 and in 2016, $173 in US dollar. While the price seems to have decreased, this likely reflects currency fluctuations as the primary currency for a large portion of the journals is not USD, for example Indian rupees as the primary currency is very common. So this information should not be taking as a proof of the decrease of APC.

Comparing prices on a journal-by-journal basis, most of the prices did not change (31 journals had exactly the same price). Four journals lowered their APC and two no longer charge APC’s.

16 journals have increased their APCs, this table show which journal have increase their APC’s, the amount for 2015 and 2016 and the percentage of increase.

screen-shot-2016-10-06-at-4-57-36-pm

As you can see most of these journals have increase their APC considerably; at least 8 journals increased their price by more than half. Some journals even doubled or tripled their prices