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Tuesday, 14th July 2015

UK: Principles for Offset Agreements

Source: JISC

As open-access (OA) publishing funded by article-processing charges (APCs) becomes more widely accepted, UK academic institutions face an increase in the ‘total cost of publication’, comprising subscription costs plus APCs and additional administration costs. Most APC payments are made to large ‘traditional’ commercial publishers who also received considerable subscription income. Jisc Collections is asking publishers to introduce offset systems that will reduce this extra cost to UK higher education.

These principles are drafted for publishers of hybrid journals (these are subscription journals in which some of the articles are open access). They aim to provide these publishers with an understanding of the requirements of their customers from the UK academic sector. They follow the spirit of the Finch Report, which was informed through dialogue with scholarly publishers, universities, and research funders. It is expected that publishers will adhere to these principles in their design of offset systems.

Following the recommendations of the Finch Report, UK Higher Education institutions are in the vanguard of a transition to open access. Although many of these institutions have received some funding to support the transition, collaboration with publishers is required in the form of offset systems to ensure affordability and sustainability.

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Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

More articles by Adrian Janes »

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