by Caroline J. Campbell (Marketing Manager, IGI Global)
During the 2018 Charleston Conference, Dr. Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, President and CEO of IGI Global, an international academic publisher of reference books and scholarly journals, led a groundbreaking Neapolitan Panel Session titled, “Sustainable Open Access Approaches: Benefits for Researchers, Librarians, and Publishers,” in collaboration with other expert panelists, including Ms. Diane Fulkerson (Director of Library Services, University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee), Ms. Julia Gelfand (Applied Sciences, Engineering & Public Health Librarian, University of California, Irvine, USA), and Mr. Kevin Sayar (Advisor at ProQuest, USA).
The presentation discussed opportunities within the Open Access (OA) movement and the proposal of a new sustainable OA model that will allow libraries and publishers to take more active and mutually beneficial roles within the OA movement; while supporting more affordable, accessible, and credible OA publishing outlets for researchers.
Under this new proposed model (which IGI Global is already offering with the subscription to, or perpetual purchase of their InfoSci-Journals database), when a library invests in an e-collection or full database, the publisher will match the investment with a fund of equal value that will cover the OA article processing charges (APCs) for any of their faculty members who submit OA submissions and have them accepted (following peer review) into any of the journals within those e-collections and/or full databases.
For institutions located in developing countries, instead of just matching the investment from the library, the publisher would double the OA article processing charge (APC) fund, offering double what the institution has invested in e-collections or full databases. Additionally, for institutions located in developing countries, subscriptions on the individual journal level would also be considered in the event that an e-collection or full database is not subscribed to or perpetually purchased.
Dr. Khosrow-Pour explains that, “this new OA initiative will allow academic libraries to receive an even stronger return on their investment and also demonstrate to their faculty their support of the OA movement by offering them complimentary APC fee coverage for publishing OA articles in IGI Global journals.”
When looking at the fund terms for annual subscriptions and how the fund would operate:
Fund terms for all libraries: For annual subscriptions, the fund allocation would be good for that year that the library is actively subscribed (the fund allocation will continue to renew as the subscription is renewed). For perpetual, the fund allocation would automatically renew each year and would factor in any additional fees paid for updates to the content.
For instance, if a library invests US $4,500 into a 2019 annual subscription of IGI Global’s InfoSci-Journals database, which houses the entirety of IGI Global’s journal holdings, IGI Global will create an OA fund equal to the US$ 4,500 investment which will allow for the article processing charges (APCs) to be waived for as many as three (3) articles (the current IGI Global APC fee for each open access article is US$ 1,500) submitted by the institution’s faculty. To ensure the highest level of ethical standards, the APC fee would be waived after the articles have undergone the full peer review process and have been formally accepted for publication by the Editor-in-Chief of the journal.
This program will not only ensure that the library community is able to maximize their investment, but it allows them to support a quality OA movement through assisting their patrons in finding credible, peer-reviewed content, and non-predatory publishing outlets. Additionally, it will allow librarians to increase the level of engagement with their collections and showcase the importance of utilizing the resources within their library.
Overall, through this publisher subsidized program, libraries are able to take the amount that they have already invested into the content and recycle it into an open access APC fund for their institution’s faculty. This allows for a much more accessible source of OA funding; thus, increasing the amount of OA content generated and the overall discoverability of research content which will ultimately expand the current body of literature. Additionally, libraries will benefit by not having to allocate any special funds for OA and the institution will receive recognition by having more published work from their faculty under a quality OA model.
Nick Newcomer, Director of Marketing at IGI Global, describes this “offset” model as “offering a common-sense solution for libraries to promote acquired quality resources among its’ patrons. Within the academic community, there is nothing more exciting than the prospect of publishing OA with a credible publisher at no cost. Therefore, by sharing these OA publishing opportunities alongside the acquired publications from this program, libraries will be better positioned to connect with faculty, students, and staff, while driving awareness to the research investment.”
For publishers this will enable libraries to take a greater interest in their (the publisher’s) content through the library subscribing or renewing their subscription to their content; faculty will become more interested in publishing with that specific publisher; and researchers will be able to easily access APC funding with the added benefit of having a “go-to” credible publishing outlet.
To watch the full 2018 Charleston Conference Neapolitan Session on this topic, please visit: https://goo.gl/eRq9GD. To learn more about IGI Global’s InfoSci-Journals OA Fee Waiver (Offset Model) Program, please visit: www.igi-global.com/infosci-journals, and also view the advertisement in this issue on page 2.
Publisher’s Ending Note: Due to the lively discussion and the fact that this model has already been implemented (i.e., IGI Global’s OA Fee Waiver Initiative), the expert panel members are welcoming questions on this new sustainable OA model to ensure that it is fully understood within the library community, and can be enhanced to be adopted by other publishers. Questions can be submitted to IGI Global at <firstname.lastname@example.org>, where they will be submitted to the panel speakers for review and the answers will be compiled. The panel members will be accepting questions until January 31, 2019.
Leah was appointed Executive Director of the Charleston Conference in 2017, and has served in various roles with the Charleston Information Group, LLC, since 2004. Prior to working for the conference, she was Assistant Director of Graduate Admissions for the College of Charleston for four years. She lives in a small town near Columbia, SC, with her husband and two kids where they raise a menagerie of farm animals.