STM Publishing – August 2021

STM Publishing – August 2021

UKRI announces new open access policy

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), the organisation bringing together Research England, Innovate UK, and England’s seven disciplinary research councils – AHRC, BBSRC, ESRC, EPSRC, MRC, NERC, and STFC – has announced a new open access policy. In future, all peer-reviewed research publications acknowledging funding from its members must be made immediately available through open access, by either green or gold routes. The policy, which will apply to all articles submitted for publication from 1 April 2022, has been issued following consultation with the sector, and is closely aligned with the policies adopted by other members of cOAlition S.

UKRI’s new policy also introduces a new requirement that all monographs, book chapters and edited collections published from 1 January 2024 must be made open access within 12 months of publication; increased annual funding of up to £46.7m will be provided to support the implementation of the new obligation.

The move has been greeted with some concern by the industry. A statement from Taylor & Francis raised concerns about “the emphasis on zero embargo, zero payment OA for the accepted manuscript” and suggested that “many of the concerns expressed by publishers and other stakeholders during this process have not been adequately addressed”, while IOP expressed disappointment that UKRI had chosen not to prioritise gold OA. However, Frontiers chief executive editor Dr Frederick Fenter described the move as “a significant milestone for the open-science movement”.

Deadline extended for Clarivate ProQuest purchase

The deadline for completion of Clarivate’s £3.8bn purchase of ProQuest has been extended from 8 November to 31 December, with an optional further extension to 29 April. The deal has been delayed by a second request of documents from the US Federal Trade Commission, currently reviewing the acquisition under antitrust law.

Transformative deals

AIP Publishing, the publishing division of the American Institute of Physics has concluded a three-year read-and-publish deal with the German Leibniz Information Centre for Science and Technology (TIB) to provide researchers at more than 80 institutions with APC-free publication in its hybrid titles and read access to most of its peer-reviewed journal portfolio.

SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, has agreed a transformative deal with the Netherlands’ Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) adding open access publishing in SPIE journals to the university’s existing subscription deal.

In brief

Springer Nature has appointed Thea Sherer, previously Director of Group Communication, as its new Climate Action Officer, leading an expanded group-wide sustainability team aiming to accelerate delivery of the company’s environment and sustainability goals.

The National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research, Kolkata, has partnered with Taylor & Francis’s open research arm F1000 to launch its own open access publishing hub, a home for conference-linked outputs in a wide range of fields and formats.

Swiss publisher Karger has chosen Silverchair to host its portfolio of health science content.

Cambridge University Press has completed its merger with Cambridge Assessment to formally become a single organisation under the name Cambridge University Press & Assessment.

 Alastair Horne is a PhD student at the British Library and Bath Spa University.

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Alastair Horne is Lecturer in Publishing at the University of Stirling in Scotland, where his research interests include digital and academic publishing. He worked in publishing for thirteen years, firstly at ProQuest and then with Cambridge University Press, where he served as Innovation Manager and led work on the BETT-award-winning Race to Learn software in partnership with the Williams Formula One team. After leaving Cambridge in 2016, he began work on a PhD exploring how smartphones are changing storytelling.

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