Europe considers Open Access without APCs (2)

17 June, 2023

Dear Chris and all,

Thank you for your message where you report 'the Council of the European Union has recommended a ‘no pay’ academic-publishing model in which neither readers nor authors are billed for academic papers'. You quote publishing consultant Rob Johnson as saying: “There’s a recognition that we need to move beyond the [article processing charge] APC. The question is: just how is that done?”

Ironically, the Nature article that discusses this is behind a paywall (US$27), so most of us are unable to read it. IN particular, we cannot see what it says regarding Plan S.

In terms of "just how is that done", Plan S provides a solution based on a number of principles include funding of article processing charges by research funders (and not by the authors themselves).

In reality, I suspect many research funders do not - yet - provide such funding, nor do they mandate open-access publication. But an increasing number do this. Is there perhaps an unstoppable trend in this direction? Also, is the trend different for research undertaken in LMICs versus HICs, thereby possibly discriminating againt both researchers and readers in LMICs?

HIFA profile: Neil Pakenham-Walsh is coordinator of HIFA (Healthcare Information For All), a global health community that brings all stakeholders together around the shared goal of universal access to reliable healthcare information. HIFA has 20,000 members in 180 countries, interacting in four languages and representing all parts of the global evidence ecosystem. HIFA is administered by Global Healthcare Information Network, a UK-based nonprofit in official relations with the World Health Organization. Email: