In DepthScientific Publishing

Germany seeks ‘big flip’ in publishing model

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Science  25 Aug 2017:
Vol. 357, Issue 6353, pp. 744-745
DOI: 10.1126/science.357.6353.744

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Over the last 2 years more than 150 German libraries, universities, and research institutes have formed a united front trying to force academic publishers into a new way of doing business. Instead of buying subscriptions to specific journals, consortium members want to pay publishers an annual lump sum that covers publication costs of all papers whose first authors are at German institutions. Those papers would be freely available around the world; meanwhile, German institutions would receive access to all of the publishers’ online content. Libraries and universities in other countries have pushed for similar agreements, but have had to settle for less than they wanted. But Germany’s consortium, named Projekt DEAL, plans to hold firm, and it thinks a successful outcome could help trigger what some call a “big flip,” a global transition toward open access.