Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The value of open access to research results

JISC has just published a new study on the economics of open access to research results (thanks, Nick!). For 2007 the authors estimate the costs of publishing to the UK higher education sector as follows:

  • £230 million to publish using the subscription model

  • £150 million to publish under the open access model

  • £110 million to publish with the self-archiving with peer review services plus some £20 million in operating costs if using the different models.

When considering costs per journal article, Houghton et al. believe that the UK higher education sector could have saved around £80 million a year by shifting from toll access to open access publishing. They also claim that £115 million could be saved by moving from toll access to open access self-archiving.

In addition to that, the financial return to UK plc from greater accessibility to research might result in an additional £172 million per annum worth of benefits from government and higher education sector research alone.

Now we have to wait and see how far universities and research funders can get in taking these resources back from the profits of the scientific publishers. The last Research Council open access initiative seems to have stalled.

2 comments:

Mark said...

Ian,

Prof. Rosling had a similar problem getting access to data sources. He developed software tools with which he made such a compelling case that he was able to sweep away years of obstruction. See this short presentation for details. Might it be of help to you here?

http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/hans_rosling_shows_the_best_stats_you_ve_ever_seen.html

There's a follow up too...
http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/hans_rosling_reveals_new_insights_on_poverty.html

locksmith mesa said...

That's nice.. =)