AAAS aligns with Plan S; announces open access policy for Science journals
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), a non-profit publisher that publishes the Science group of journals, recently announced a new policy to align itself with Plan S – an initiative by cOAlition S to expedite immediate and open access of scientific literature.
cOAlition S mandates that an author accepted manuscript must comply with CC BY 4.0 license or a CC BY-ND license. Therefore, as part of the updated policy, AAAS will allow authors funded by cOAlition S organizations to reuse and distribute their accepted manuscripts with a required license immediately.
To comply with Plan S, which came into effect from January 1, 2021, several subscription based journals have come forth with various plans. While many require authors to pay article processing charges, AAAS believes this could put added pressure on authors. Structural biologist Stephen Curry at Imperial College London said: “It’s a bold move to go for a green OA solution to meeting Plan S requirements, and notable that they are pointing to the inequities associated with the article-processing-charge business model.”
A report published by Clarivate Analytics states that “31% of articles published in Science in 2017 acknowledged grants from a Plan S funder.” While authors publishing in Science journals who aren’t funded by cOAlition S would not be part of the new policy. Commenting on this, Lisa Hinchliffe, a librarian at the University of Illinois, said: “It is unfortunate that this perpetuates the differentials we see in the ecosystem, where some publishing pathways’ privileges are extended to certain scholars but not others.”
AAAS intends to pilot the green open access model for a year to understand whether it is a sustainable option for its paywalled journals.
- 8 Publishers to disclose pricing details as part of a Plan S pilot
- Springer Nature commits to joining Plan S to offer open access routes
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