With new read-and-publish deal, UK universities sign the ‘world’s largest’ OA agreement with Elsevier

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With new read-and-publish deal, UK universities sign the ‘world’s largest’ OA agreement with Elsevier

The representative body of the UK’s academic institutions, Jisc, has confirmed a three-year open access deal with Elsevier, a leading global publisher.

As per the OA agreement, researchers associated with UK universities will get immediate access to research published in Elsevier’s 2,700 journals. Besides, it will also enable them to publish open access in all journals under Elsevier, amplifying the reach of UK-based research.  

Hailed as one of the “world’s largest open access agreements with Elsevier”1, it will also cut UK universities' publishing spend by 10%, which is a greater reduction in cost than the 7% discount that the University of California obtained in its OA contract with Elsevier last year.

The agreement acknowledges the UK’s contribution and progress made in the last five years in shifting its research to open access, and addresses the challenges faced by the higher education sector, primarily due to the pandemic.

Gemma Hersh, Elsevier’s SVP Global Academics and Government Sales, calls UK researchers “world class”1 and explains how this agreement makes an important contribution toward immediate open access to UK researchers and will enable “researchers to read the high quality, trusted research published in Elsevier journals”.1

Similarly, Elsevier’s inclination toward making research open access is also quite evident; out of the 2,700 journals under Elsevier, almost all of them are open access, 600 of them being fully open access. The publisher has made open access publishing possible for over 2,000 institutions worldwide with customized agreements, like the one made with Jisc. Such initiatives have led to open-access publishing in Elsevier to increase by more than 46% in 2021 as compared to 2020.1

This agreement between the two bodies is expected to significantly reduce current institutional spending as it is targeted to make 80% of the UK’s research open access without researchers bearing any additional publishing cost.

Liam Earney, managing director, higher education and research, Jisc called the agreement “world’s largest Open Access agreement”, a unique step to make research economic and accessible, and a key move “towards full, equitable and affordable transition to open scholarship”.2 He also highlighted that there’s much more room for work in the open-access sector, and Jisc will continue to collaborate.2



1. Elsevier and Jisc sign three-year agreement to support transition to Open Access for UK Research. Elsevier. https://www.elsevier.com/about/press-releases/corporate/elsevier-and-jisc-sign-three-year-agreement-to-support-transition-to-open-access-for-uk-research (2022).

2. Jisc response to the Elsevier open access agreement. Jisc. https://www.jisc.ac.uk/news/jisc-response-to-the-elsevier-open-access-agreement-23-mar-2022 (2022).

3. Inge, S. UK universities sign ‘world’s largest’ OA deal with Elsevier. ResearchProfessional News. https://researchprofessionalnews.com/rr-news-uk-open-access-2022-3-uk-universities-sign-world-s-largest-oa-deal-with-elsevier/ (2022).


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Published on: Mar 25, 2022


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