Saturday, August 28. 2010
Comparing Green and Gold
Cognitive Sciences Institute
Universitè du Québec à Montréal
Jan Velterop has posted his hunch that of the overall percentage of articles published annually today most will prove to be Gold OA journal articles, once one separates from the articles that are classified as self-archived Green OA those of them that also happen to be published in Gold OA journals:
JV: “Is anyone… aware of credible research that shows how many articles (in the last 5 years, say), outside physics and the Arxiv preprint servers, have been made available with OA exclusively via 'green' archiving in repositories, and how many were made available with OA directly ('gold') by the publishers (author-side paid or not)?The results turn out to go strongly contrary to Velterop’s hunch.
Our ongoing project is comparing citation counts for mandated Green OA articles with those for non-mandated Green OA articles, all published in journals indexed by the Thompson/Reuters ISI database (science and social-science/humanities). (We use only the ISI-indexed sample because the citation counts for our comparisons between OA and non-OA are all derived from ISI.)
The four mandated institutions were Southampton University (ECS), Minho, Queensland University of Technology and CERN.
Out of our total set of 11,801 mandated, self-archived OA articles, we first set aside all those (279) articles that had been published in Gold OA journals (i.e., the journals in the DOAJ-indexed subset of ISI-indexed journals) because we were primarily interested in testing the OA citation advantage, which is based on comparing the citation counts of OA articles versus non-OA articles published in the same journal and year. (This can only be done in non-OA journals, because OA journals have no non-OA articles.) This left only the Green OA articles published in non-Gold journals.
We then extracted, as control articles for each article in this purely Green OA subset, 10 keyword-matched articles published in the same journal and year. The total number of articles in this control sample for the years 2002-2008 was 41,755. (Our preprint for PloS, Gargouri et al. 2010, covers a somewhat smaller, earlier period: 2002-2006, with 20,982 control articles.)
Next we used a robot to check what percentage of these unmandated control articles was OA (freely accessible on the web).
Of our total set of 11,801 mandated, self-archived articles, 279 articles (2.4%) had been published in the 63 Gold OA journals (2.6%) among the 2,391 ISI-indexed journals in which the authors from our four mandated institutions had published in 2002-2008. Both these estimates of percent Gold OA are about half as big as the total 5% proportion for Gold OA journals among all ISI-indexed journals (active in the past 10 years). To be conservative, we can use the higher figure of 5% as a first estimate of the Gold OA contribution to total OA among all ISI-indexed journals.
Now, in our sample, we find that out of the total number of articles published in ISI-indexed journals by authors from our four mandated institutions between 2002-2008 (11,801 articles), about 65.6% of them (7,736 articles) had indeed been made Green OA through self-archiving by their authors, as mandated (7,457 or 63.2% Green only, and 279 or 2.4% both Green and Gold).
In contrast, for our 42,395 keyword-matched, non-mandated control articles, the percentage OA was 23.4% (21.9% Green and 1.5% Gold).
Björk et al’s (2010) corresponding finding [Table 3] for their ISI sample (1282 articles for 2008 alone, calculated in 2009), was 20.6% total OA (14% Green plus 6.6% Gold). (For an extended sample that also included non-ISI journals it was 11.9% Green plus 8.5% Gold.)
The variance is probably due to different discipline blends in the samples (see Björk et al's Figure 4, where Gold exceeds Green in bio-medicine), but whichever overall results one chooses – whether our 21.9% Green and 1.5% Gold or Björk et al’s 14% Gold and 6.6% Green (or even their extended 11.9% Green and 8.5% Gold), the figures fail to bear out Velterop’s hunch that:
“publishers (the 'gold' road) have actually done more to bring OA about than repositories, even where mandated (the 'green' road).”Moreover (and this is really the most important point of all), Velterop's hunch is the wrongest of all precisely where OA is mandated, for there the percent Green is over 60%, and headed toward 100%. That is the real power of Green OA mandates.
Gargouri, Y., Hajjem, C., Lariviere, V., Gingras, Y., Brody, T., Carr, L. and Harnad, S. (2010) Self-Selected or Mandated, Open Access Increases Citation Impact for Higher Quality Research. PLOS ONE 10(5)
Björk B-C, Welling P, Laakso M, Majlender P, Hedlund T, et al. (2010) Open Access to the Scientific Journal Literature: Situation 2009. PLOS ONE 5(6): e11273.
Wednesday, August 18. 2010
Is that 34% [56% x 60%] of OU's yearly research article output? How did you do that estimate? (We used Thompson/Reuters Web of Science data to estimate staff annual article output.)
Would you be willing to give me permission to post it, along with your response, above? -- Of course, what would be even more helpful would be if I could also add a passage in your own words about what needs to be done at an institution that does not yet have a mandate, in order to achieve a deposit rate as good as OU's [56% x 60% = 34%]. It would give institutions and IR managers something concrete to do while they are trying to get a deposit mandate adopted!
Friday, August 13. 2010
Authors' Drafts, Publishers' Versions-of-Record, Digital Preservation, Open Access and Institutional Repositories
Commentary on Richard Poynder's
"Preserving the Scholarly Record:
Interview with digital preservation specialist Neil Beagrie"
The trouble with universities (or nations) treating digital preservation (which is a genuine problem, and a genuine responsibility) as a single generic problem -- covering all the university's (or nation's) "digital output," whether published or unpublished, OA or non-OA -- is not only that adding an additional preservation cost and burden where it is not yet needed (by conflating Green OA self-archiving mandates with "preservation mandates" and their funding demands) makes it even harder to get a Green OA self-archiving mandate adopted at all. But taking an indiscriminate, scattershot approach to the preservation problem also disserves the digital preservation agenda itself.
As usual, what is needed is to sort out and understand the actual contingencies, and then to implement the priorities, clearly and explicitly, in the requisite causal order. The priorities here are to focus university (or national) preservation efforts and funds on what needs to be preserved today. And -- as far as universities' own institutional repositories (IRs) are concerned -- that does not include the publisher's official version-of-record for that university's (or nation's) journal article output. Preserving those versions-of-record is a matter to be worked out among deposit libraries and the publishers and institutional subscribers of the journals in question. Each university's own IR is for providing OA to its own authors' final, refereed drafts of those articles, in order to make them accessible to those users worldwide who do not have subscription access to the version-of-record. The author's draft does indeed need preservation too, but that's not the same preservation problem as the problem of preserving the published version-of-record (nor is it the same document!).
Perhaps one day universal Green OA mandates will cause journal subscriptions to become unsustainable, because the worldwide users of journal articles will be fully satisfied with just the author's final drafts rather than needing the publisher's version-of-record, and hence journal subscriptions will be cancelled. If and when we ever reach that point, the version-of-record will no longer be produced by the publisher, because the authors' drafts will effectively become the version-of-record. Journal publishers will then convert to Gold OA publishing, with what remains of the cost of publication paid for by institutions, per individual article published, out of their windfall subscription cancellation savings. (Some of those savings can then also be devoted to digital preservation of the institutional version-of-record.)
But conflating the (nonexistent) need to pay for this hypothetical future contingency today (when we still have next to no OA or OA mandates, and subscriptions are still going strong) with either universities' (or nations') digital preservation agenda or their OA IR agenda is not only incoherent but counterproductive.
Let's keep the agendas distinct: IRs can archive many different kinds of content. Let's work to preserve all IR content, of course, but let's not mistake that IR preservation function for journal article preservation or OA.
For journal articles, worry about preserving the version-of-record -- and that has nothing to do with what is being deposited in IRs today.Nor should the need to mandate depositing the author's version be in any way hamstrung with extra expenses that concern the publish's version-of-record, or the university's IR, or OA. (Exactly the same thing is true, mutatis mutandis, at the national preservation level, insofar as journal articles are concerned: A journal's contents do not all come from one institution, nor from one nation.)
And, while we're at it, let's also keep university (or national) funding of Gold OA publishing costs distinct from the Green OA mandating agenda too. First things first. Needlessly over-reaching (for Gold OA funds or preservation funds) simply delays getting what is already fully within universities' (and nations') grasps -- which is the newfound (but mostly unused) potential to provide OA to the authors' drafts of all their refereed journal articles by requiring them to be deposited in their OA IRs (not by reforming journal publishing, nor by solving the digital preservation problem).
American Scientist Open Access Forum
Tuesday, August 10. 2010
Phil Davis continues his inexplicable preoccupation with what's best for the publishing industry, at the expense of what is best for research, researchers, their institutions, their funders, and the tax-paying public that funds them -- the ones by and for whom the research funded.
Phil's latest point is that the low uptake by authors of committed Gold OA funds indicates that authors don't really want OA.
But authors themselves have responded quite clearly, and repeatedly, in Alma Swan's international surveys, that they do need, want, and value OA. Yet they also state that they will only provide OA to their own writings if their institutions and funders require (i.e., mandate) them to provide it.
(There is definitely a paradox here, but it is not resolved by simply assuming that authors don't really want OA! It's rather more complicated than that. Authors would not publish much, either, if their institutions and funders did not require them to "publish or perish." And without that, where would the publishing industry be?)
I have dubbed the condition "Zeno's Paralysis," which is the fact that for a variety of reasons (38 at last count) -- all groundless and easily defeasible but relentlessly recurrent nonetheless, including worries about copyright, worries about getting published, worries about peer review, and even worries about the time and effort it might require to provide OA -- most authors will not provide OA spontaneously. And the cure is not only known, but has already been administered by over 150 institutions and funders: Mandate OA.
And the only form of OA that institutions and funders can mandate is Green OA self-archiving of all peer-reviewed journal articles, immediately upon acceptance for publication.
Apart from that, all they can do is provide some of their scarce funds (largely tied up in paying for subscriptions) to pay for a little Gold OA publishing. The uptake for that is even lower than for unmandated Green OA self-archiving, but that's certainly not evidence against Alma Swan's survey findings about what authors want, and what it will take to get them to provide it (and Arthur Sale's data confirming that authors actually do as they say they will do, if mandated).
Monday, August 9. 2010
In "How much does a COPE-compliant open-access fund cost?", Stuart Shieber, the architect of Harvard's historic faculty consensus on mandating Green Open Access Self-Archiving, has explained that the purpose of the "Compact for Open Access Publishing Equity" (COPE) commitment of funds to pay Gold OA publishing costs is (1) to provide a "safety net" for publishers, that (2) COPE does not fund hybrid Gold or (3) double-dipping, and that (4) the amount of money involved is trivial. Stuart accordingly asks that "harangues [in particular from me!] about open-access funds amounting to throwing away large quantities of valuable dollars [should] please stop now."For what it’s worth, my objections to COPE are not based on double-dipping, nor on the amount committed; they are not even based on COPE per se. They are based on committing to COPE without first committing to mandating Green OA.
It is good that COPE does not propose to fund hybrid Gold (where the journal continues to get paid for subscriptions, and also gets paid for those articles that pay extra to be made OA). That’s double-dipping — though the publishers can (and some do) reply (in words to the effect) that:
A safety net to preserve current revenue streams, regardless of their source.“No, it’s not double-dipping, it’s just a safety net, in case the market ever swings toward Gold: For now, we will reduce our subscriptions proportionately, to reflect any Gold OA revenues. If and when the transition is complete, it’s complete: all revenues come from Gold OA fees, zero from subscriptions. Never any double-dipping.” [not a real quote]
No, the ones who are double-dripping (sic) are the institutions, who are spending money on buying in subscriptions, and -- whether they pay for hybrid Gold or pure-gold COPE journals (e.g., in the Springer/BMC “Membership" Deal) -- also spending money on Gold (scarce money, reputedly, given the years of agonizing over the serials crisis and journal price inflation).
But even that would not matter, if the institutions were just to mandate Green OA first.
But committing to paying for Gold OA of any description without first mandating Green OA strikes me as a real head-shaker. (Of the eight universities Stuart lists as having committed to pay [something] for Gold OA, only two -- Harvard and MIT -- have mandated Green OA.)
What we need today is OA, not safety nets for publishers. Green OA mandates will bring us OA: 100% OA. Instead fiddling pre-emptively with the future of publishing will not.
Stuart has made such a brilliant, unique contribution to OA in orchestrating Harvard’s historic Green OA mandate. I continue to feel perplexed as to to why he is squandering any of his considerable expertise and influence at this critical juncture on persuading universities to squander their scarce resources (no matter how minimally) on pre-emptive Gold (as a publishers’ safety net) without first persuading them to follow his own gloriously Green example first (which was to mandate Green OA first, and then commit to spending some money on Gold OA).
Upon reflection, I remember that Stuart has actually given a hint of why he has become so preoccupied with Gold: Because one of the obstacles he had encountered in convincing faculty to vote-in a Green OA mandate by consensus, as Harvard FAS did, was (some) authors’ worries about publishers’ future.
So maybe the preoccupation with creating a safety net for publishers is really for the (sense of) safety of authors, so they are more likely to vote-in a Green OA mandate by consensus?
But the Harvard FAS’s historic consensus on Green OA came before any commitment to a Gold safety net. And the same is true of the over 150 other Green OA mandates worldwide to date (though most were adopted by presidential or provostial wisdom, rather than waiting for faculty to come to any consensus).
Wouldn’t a less costly and circuitous way of calming individuals’ concerns about the safety of publishers under Green OA mandates be to point out that if subscription publishing were ever caused to become unsustainable because of the availability of Green OA, the vast sums of money that institutions are now spending on subscriptions would then by the very same token be released as the “safety net” to pay for the conversion to Gold OA?
Does the first step really have to be pre-emptive payment, even token payment, rather than just going ahead and mandating the Green and letting the future of publishing take care of itself -- while the research community takes care of getting its research into the hands of all its intended users at long last, instead of just those whose institutions can afford a subscription?
American Scientist Open Access Forum
Wednesday, August 4. 2010
Houghton, John (with Bruce Rasmussen and Peter Sheehan) (2010) Economic and Social Returns on Investment in Open Archiving Publicly Funded Research Outputs. SPARC study.
"Preliminary modeling suggests that over a transitional period of 30 years from implementation, the potential incremental benefits of the proposed FRPAA archiving mandate might be worth around 8 times the costs. Perhaps two-thirds of these benefits would accrue within the US, with the remainder spilling over to other countries. Hence, the US national benefits arising from the proposed FRPAA archiving mandate might be of the order of 5 times the costs."
This new Houghton Report from SPARC is especially timely, counterbalancing its cautious empirical evidence against the data-free rhetoric of those publishers who are trying to kill the FRPAA and end President Obama's Request for Information on Public Access Policy by arguing that the purpose of funding, conducting and publishing research is to maximize publishers' revenues rather than to maximize the benefits of research to the tax-paying public that funded it:
Drawing by Judith Economos
Feel free to re-use to promote FRPAA and OA.
Apart from offering to sell its authors immediate (gold) Open Access publishing for an extra fee, Nature Publishing Group (NPG) continues to embargo (green) Open Access self-archiving by its authors until 6 months after publication.
Yet in its promotional press release, NPG writes of itself:
"Our liberal self-archiving policy and free manuscript deposition service remain an important part of our open access offering and service to authors."From NPG's License to Publish [emphasis added]:
"When a manuscript is accepted for publication in an NPG journal, authors are encouraged to submit the author's version of the accepted paper (the unedited manuscript) to PubMedCentral or other appropriate funding body's archive, for public release six months after publication. In addition, authors are encouraged to archive this version of the manuscript in their institution's repositories and, if they wish, on their personal websites, also six months after the original publication.Yes, NPG was indeed in 2002 among the first publishers to request an exclusive license to publish instead of requiring a copyright transfer from its authors.
But what did that mean?
That new policy was at first clouded in uncertainty as to whether or not it meant that NPG was endorsing immediate, unembargoed author self-archiving of the author's final, refereed, accepted draft (green OA).
Then in January 2003 NPG indicated that it did indeed endorse immediate, unembargoed author self-archiving of the author's final draft (green OA), as over 60% of journals (including almost all the top journals -- including, notably -- Nature's rival, Science) have likewise done since.
But then in January 2005 NPG back-slid, imposing a 6-month embargo on self-archiving (and instead liberally offered to help ensure that the self-archiving was not done by NPG authors any earlier than 6 months after publication, by offering its authors a free "Manuscript Deposition Service" to take the self-archiving entirely out of the hands of its authors, with NPG doing the self-archiving in their place, for free -- after the embargo!). For authors who nevertheless desired immediate OA for their papers, some NPG journals went on to offer the option of paying NPG about $3000-$5000 (over and above all the subscriptions already generously paying OA for publication) for immediate (hybrid gold) OA.
That means NPG is today among the minority of journals (and the even tinier minority of the top journals) not to endorse immediate OA self-archiving.
If NPG wishes to promote itself as "liberal on OA," it needs to drop its embargo on green OA, like the rest of the majority of journal publishers that are genuinely on the side of the angels in their policy on green OA (such as APS, IOP, APA, ACS, the Royal Society, Springer and Elsevier).
If not, then NPG's embargo on green OA, its paid gold OA option, and its "liberal" willingness to take the chore of self-archiving out of the author's hands is more accurately construed as a marketing strategy to restrict green OA and increase extra revenues from selling gold OA in its place.
American Scientist Open Access Forum
Tuesday, August 3. 2010
Let me precede this one-line comment by first asking a question (to which I fervently hope the answer will prove to be Yes rather than No):
Question: Before adopting its University of Florida Open Access Publishing (UFOAP) Fund Pilot Project in July 2010, did UF adopt the open access self-archiving mandate proposed by UF's long-time OA advocate, Tom Walker, way back in April 2009?
Comment: For if not, then UF is making a substantial strategic error, squandering scarce funds to pay for a little more OA for some of UF's research output, instead of first providing OA, at no extra cost, to all of UF's research output.
Never Pay Pre-Emptively For Gold OA Before First Mandating Green OA
On Not Putting The Gold OA-Payment Cart Before The Green OA-Provision Horse
Why It Is Not Enough Just To Give Green OA Higher Weight Than Gold OA
American Scientist Open Access Forum
(Page 1 of 1, totaling 8 entries)
Syndicate This Blog
Materials You Are Invited To Use To Promote OA Self-Archiving:
The American Scientist Open Access Forum has been chronicling and often directing the course of progress in providing Open Access to Universities' Peer-Reviewed Research Articles since its inception in the US in 1998 by the American Scientist, published by the Sigma Xi Society.
The Forum is largely for policy-makers at universities, research institutions and research funding agencies worldwide who are interested in institutional Open Acess Provision policy. (It is not a general discussion group for serials, pricing or publishing issues: it is specifically focussed on institutional Open Acess policy.)
You can sign on to the Forum here.
Last entry: 2017-03-27 13:12
1125 entries written
238 comments have been made