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Ohio University Libraries, OhioLINK supporting open access publishing costs through transformative agreements

Open access publishing has become increasingly important by allowing research to be freely accessible to everyone, regardless of their institutional affiliation or financial resources. In fact, a new study has found that open access articles have furthered the academic reach more than traditional pay-walled publications, especially those published as “green” open access articles.

However, one of the challenges faced by researchers is the cost associated with publishing in open access journals. One way libraries are working to address this issue is by advocating for transformative agreements with publishers.

OhioLINK, a statewide library consortium, has transformative agreements with several publishers including Elsevier, Springer, Wiley, Cambridge and the Institute of Physics. And Ohio University Libraries has agreements with BioMed Central and SpringerOpen to provide OHIO researchers with a 15 percent discount for all open journals. You can read more about open access publishing agreements on the Open Access Fees webpage. 

Transformative agreements, contracts made between libraries and publishers, aim to transition from the current subscription-based model of scholarly publishing to one that is more open and sustainable. These agreements often include provisions for covering the cost of open access publishing for authors affiliated with participating institutions.

Through those agreements, authors affiliated with Ohio University and other OhioLINK institutions can publish their research in open access journals without incurring the often substantial article processing charges (APCs). 

One example of this initiative is the Wiley Open Access Account, which is available to Ohio University researchers through OhioLINK. This account covers the full cost of APCs for open access publishing in Wiley journals and makes it easier for researchers to choose open access options for their work.

Additional need to know information

  1. Not all publishers’ journals are covered in the transformative agreement. Be sure to check before submitting to a covered journal. Check all OhioLINK’s OA publishers at their author information page. 
  2. The OhioLINK affiliated author, which includes Ohio University, needs to be the corresponding author on the manuscript, and the author who handles the manuscript and correspondence during the publication process. 
  3. For most of the transformative agreements, publishers will ask the author to verify the APC coverage by verifying the OhioLINK affiliation, after the manuscript acceptance and during the editing process. To verify, use the author’s Ohio University email to submit. 
  4. For some publishers, they will only support APC coverage for so many OhioLINK articles per year. So, submitting earlier in the calendar year is best. 
  5. This benefit is not limited to just faculty members.

Not sure how to proceed? Ask University Libraries librarians and archivists.

In addition to negotiating transformative agreements, Ohio University Libraries and OhioLINK also provide support and guidance to researchers on open access publishing including information on open access journals, funding opportunities, and compliance with funder mandates for open access. For more information, see the Libraries’ guide about open access options more broadly. 

By actively supporting open access publishing through transformative agreements and providing resources for researchers, Ohio University Libraries and OhioLINK are playing a crucial role in advancing open access and making scholarly research more accessible to all.

For more information about Ohio University Libraries and OhioLINK's support for open access publishing costs, visit the Ohio University Libraries website.

April 16, 2024
Hanna Schmillen and John Canter