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Tuesday, September 4, 2018 News

Coalition of European Funders Announces “Plan S” to Require Full OA, Cap APCs, & Disallow Publication in Hybrid Journals

Open Access

A group of 10 European research funders, supported by the European Commission and the European Research Council released plans to mandate a move to full, immediate Open Access for all of their funded research articles by January 1, 2020. Citing the detrimental effects of paywalls on the progress of science, a new document, “Plan S,” calls for “research publications that are generated through research grants to be made fully and immediately open, and not monetized in any way.”

The “Plan S” document lays out a set of principles to followed in order to achieve this aggressive goal including:

  • All articles funded by public grants must be published in OA journals or made available on OA platforms.
  • Access must be immediate—no allowable embargo periods.
  • Authors must retain their copyright, and articles must carry an open licenses (preferably CC BY).
  • Where publication fees apply, they will be standardized and capped across Europe.
  • “Hybrid” journals are NOT considered an allowable venue for publication.
  • Funders will monitor compliance and sanction non-compliance.

This is an ambitious proposition, and, as with any proposed new policy, the implementation details will be critically important. Those details are currently under development, with the participating funders forming a new working group, called ‘cOAlition-s’ to oversee this task. The coalition has also issued an open invitation for other funders to join as well.

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