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[BOAI] The Open Access Interviews: Richard Savory, Jisc Licensing Manager

From: "Richard Poynder" <richard.poynder AT>
Date: Wed, 10 Dec 2014 18:46:03 -0000

For the past several decades the research community has been bedevilled with
the so-called serials crisis, the phenomenon by which the cost of scholarly
journals continues to rise at an unsustainable rate.


One of the most significant responses to this affordability problem was the
open access (OA) movement, which in 2002 coalesced around the Budapest Open
Access Initiative. Open access publishing, OA advocates have always argued,
will be cheaper, and therefore sustainable.


In 2004, confronted by the growing demands of the OA movement, and faced
with competition from open access publishers like BioMed Central and PLOS,
traditional subscription publishers responded with hybrid OA, which allows
authors to continue publishing in subscription journals but, if they wish,
to choose to make a particular paper open access by paying an
article-processing charge (APC). The first such initiative was Springer's
Open Choice, which at the time the company's CEO Derk Haank characterised as
a challenge to OA advocates to "put their money where their mouth 


Since hybrid OA APCs are more expensive than those of pure open access
journals (i.e. generally around $3,000 a paper), take up remained low until
research funders like the Wellcome Trust and Research Councils UK agreed to
start paying APCs for their funded authors.


It was quickly apparent however that, as things stood, hybrid OA could only
worsen the affordability problem, since hybrid OA journals now have not one,
but two income streams for the same article - one from the
article-processing charge, another from the journal subscription, a
phenomenon that OA advocates refer to as "double dipping".


With the government pushing hard for all the research it funds to be made
open access, the issue of double dipping is particularly acute for UK HEIs,
and Jisc, the organisation that negotiates licensing agreements with
publishers on their behalf, has this year been busy negotiating offsetting
agreements with publishers intended to mitigate or extinguish double


An interview with Jisc's Licensing Manager Richard Savory can be read here:


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