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Re: Funds for OA publication charges -- On Not Putting The Gold OA-Payment Cart Before The Green OA-Provision Horse Stevan Harnad 11 Jan 2011 11:22 UTC

** Cross-posted **

On Mon, Jan 10, 2011 at 10:44 AM, Karen Bates <> wrote:

> A central university fund is being set up to help enable Salford researchers
> to meet the cost of Open Access publication charges, and we, in the library,
> have been asked to help produce criteria and guidelines for applications for
> this funding.  So my starting point is to try and find examples of criteria
> that other institutions with a similar fund use to judge applications/award
> the funds.
> Are any other repository staff similarly involved in their institutions’
> Open Access publishing funds? And would anyone be willing to share info
> regarding criteria you use to award funds to your researchers?

On Tue, Jan 11, 2011 at 4:37 AM, Karen Bates <> wrote:

> Many thanks for all your responses to this on and off list – you’ve provided
> some very useful information and links!  It doesn’t seem like many
> institutions in the UK have gone down this route yet, with more examples in
> Europe and the States – will be interesting to see if this changes soon.
> Karen Bates
> Repository Manager
> The University of Salford

Let's hope, fervently, that what changes first, and soon, is that
institutions go down the route of mandating green OA self-archiving
(as University of Salford has wisely done)
for *all* of their refereed research output, *before* they begin
spending any of their increasingly scarce funds on funding gold OA
publishing for a fraction of their research output:

On Not Putting The Gold OA-Payment Cart Before The Green OA-Provision Horse

SUMMARY: Universities need to commit to mandating Green OA
self-archiving before committing to spend their scarce available funds
to pay for Gold OA publishing. Most of the university's potential
funds to pay Gold OA publishing fees are currently committed to paying
their annual journal subscription fees, which are thereby covering the
costs of publication already. Pre-emptively committing to pay Gold OA
publication fees over and above paying subscription fees will only
provide OA for a small fraction of a university's total research
article output; Green OA mandates will provide OA for all of it.
Journal subscriptions cannot be cancelled unless the journals'
contents are otherwise accessible to a university's users. (In
addition, the very same scarcity of funds that makes pre-emptive Gold
OA payment for journal articles today premature and ineffectual also
makes Gold OA payment for monographs unaffordable, because the
university funds already committed to journal subscriptions today are
making even the purchase of a single print copy of incoming monographs
for the library prohibitive, let alone making Gold OA publication fees
for outgoing monographs affordable.) Universal Green OA mandates will
make the final peer-reviewed drafts of all journal articles freely
accessible to all would-be users online, thereby not only providing
universal OA, but opening the doors to an eventual transition to
universal Gold OA if and when universities then go on to cancel
subscriptions, releasing those committed funds to pay the publishing
costs of Gold OA.

The Immediate Practical Implication of the Houghton Report: Provide
Green Open Access Now

ABSTRACT: Among the many important implications of Houghton et al’s
(2009) timely and illuminating JISC analysis of the costs and benefits
of providing free online access (“Open Access,” OA) to peer-reviewed
scholarly and scientific journal articles one stands out as
particularly compelling: It would yield a forty-fold benefit/cost
ratio if the world’s peer-reviewed research were all self-archived by
its authors so as to make it OA. There are many assumptions and
estimates underlying Houghton et al’s modelling and analyses, but they
are for the most part very reasonable and even conservative. This
makes their strongest practical implication particularly striking: The
40-fold benefit/cost ratio of providing Green OA is an order of
magnitude greater than all the other potential combinations of
alternatives to the status quo analyzed and compared by Houghton et
al. This outcome is all the more significant in light of the fact that
self-archiving already rests entirely in the hands of the research
community (researchers, their institutions and their funders), whereas
OA publishing depends on the publishing industry. Perhaps most
remarkable is the fact that this outcome emerged from studies that
approached the problem primarily from the standpoint of the economics
of publication rather than the economics of research.

Stevan Harnad

> From:  Peter Suber
> Sent: 10 January 2011 22:37
> To: Bates Karen
> Karen:  See the list of OA journal funds at the Open Access Directory.
> As often as possible, we link to university pages about the funds,
> describing the policies you'd like to study.