A landscape study on open access and monographs: Policies, funding and publishing in eight European countries

Author: Eelco Ferwerda, Frances Pinter, and Niels Stern

Abstract: Knowledge Exchange is continously active in promoting Open Access by bringing together Open Access experts from all six KE-countries. This study was initiated by Knowledge Exchange and financed by Knowledge ExchangeFWFCRIStin and Couperin, and together with the skilled expertise of Eelco Ferwerda, Frances Pinter and Niels Stern, we can now publish the biggest landscape study on the conditions and potentials for Open Access books yet.

The field of OA monographs is still in its early evolution and therefore 73 in-depth conversations were conducted to understand the different developments among three stakeholder groups: Publishers, funders and libraries. The importance of author attitudes, scholarly reward and incentive systems is also raised throughout the study by numerous interviewees.

Our study shows that although the main OA policies do not include monographs, conversations about OA and monographs are surfacing and are expected to be accelerating over the next few years.

The general explanation for monographs not being included in policies is the global focus on journal publishing and the perception that monographs are more complex to deal with than journals. Some also point to a lack of demand yet from authors.

In general, OA book publishers will comply with gold OA policies from funders and institutions. This is not the case for green OA. It appears that the current self archiving policies from publishers for books are largely restricted to book chapters.

The report also points towards the fact that funding schemes for books are lagging behind schemes for articles and their availability to fund the publishing process is somewhat ad hoc across the countries we’ve surveyed. Nevertheless the authors are ‘cautiously optimistic’ about the prospects for OA and monographs.

The report creates an overview of both the OA monographs policies, funding streams and publishing models for all eight countries for the first time. This is used to point towards areas of future efforts.

Citation: Eelco Ferwerda, Frances Pinter, and Niels Stern. (2017). A landscape study on open access and monographs: Policies, funding and publishing in eight European countries.  Knowledge Exchange. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.815932.

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