With IGI Global's Hybrid Open Access, the power is in the hands of the author(s)

IGI Global's Hybrid Open Access Allows Authors to Determine the Access of the Paper

By Colby Conway on Oct 26, 2017
open access, scholarly publishing
As Open Access Week progresses, individuals from around the world are discussing the benefits of opening up access to journal articles and book chapters for free. From increasing the visibility and diversity of research to making it more accessible to scholars in all corners of the world, the various Open Access models appear to have many advocates.

“As a researcher who studies how Open Data is provided, I feel strongly that publishing Open Access journal articles extends the reach and enhances the impact of my work,” Professor Peter Johnson emphasizes.

An Associate Professor at the University of Waterloo, Johnson has taken advantage of IGI Global’s Hybrid Open Access model to publish an open access article in both the International Journal of E-Planning Research and the International Journal of Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management.

“Going forward, I aim to make all of my scholarly work Open Access,” Johnson stresses.

With IGI Global journals, he may be able to do just that.

All IGI Global journals offer a Hybrid Open Access publishing model. While the journals are still subscription-based, the authors of the articles can make the call on whether to publish their article as part of the journal’s subscription-based content, or as open access.

Though it may sound as simple as checking box a or b, authors should keep in mind that publishing a paper as open access requires an article processing charge to be paid, either by the author or a funding body. The reason for this article processing charge is that while the accessibility for the final published work differs between the two submission methods, much of the editorial processing of the article is the same. This includes the formatting and typesetting, as well as any conversions that need to take place to make the article printable and available in e-formats, not to mention marketing and distribution.

“The article processing charge covers the costs associated with publishing the article, a fee that in traditional subscription-based models is typically covered by the revenue generated through journal subscriptions,” states Lindsay Wertman, Managing Director at IGI Global. “By covering the necessary costs associated with publishing, the article processing charge allows the open access article to be immediately made freely available online.”

What the fee does not do is guarantee that an author’s article will be published.

“The author(s) won’t have to pay the fee until after the article has been put through the peer review process and formally accepted into the journal,” Wertman explains. “Ideally, the funding body should be arranged ahead of time, and payment is merely expected once accepted. If for any reason the funding body is not able to pay the fee, the author(s) will have the option of switching their article to standard subscription-based processing, and the author(s) would then be requested to sign the necessary agreements as the article would no longer fall under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) licensing agreement.”

This Hybrid Open Access model benefits all scholars, allowing those who prefer to publish traditionally and also those who are required to publish under open access a certain amount of flexibility.

Andreas Komninos, a researcher at the University of Strathclyde and, like Johnson, the author of an open access article which was featured in the International Journal of Mobile Human Computer Interaction, mentioned that articles from UK Research Council funded projects “must be published in open access journals, or journals that allow the deposit of final accepted drafts in other public repositories.”

UK Research Council regulations aside, Komninos believes in the positive effects of publishing open access.

“We strongly support the belief that the findings of publicly funded research, and, indeed, all research, should be available to everyone without charge,” says Komninos. “We were delighted to have been able to make our work openly available to other researchers and the general public.”

While it is difficult for a publisher to allow open access models without some type of fee, there are still exceptions that can be made to ensure that scholars from all walks of life have the equal opportunity of making their research freely accessible to all.

“For authors from low- and middle-income countries, IGI Global will offer a 50% discount or just completely waive the article processing charge,” Wertman explains, “and the charge will be waived for all authors, even if one isn’t from one of the countries on the list.”

For a list of countries eligible for a waiver and to learn more about IGI Global’s Open Access procedures, please visit the Open Access webpage.

Be sure to follow us on social media and join the conversation about Open Access Week on Twitter and Facebook by using #IGIGlobal and #OAWeek.

IGI Global would like to thank Peter Johnson and Andreas Komninos for contributing their thoughts on open access, as well as Lindsay Wertman for explaining more about IGI Global’s Hybrid Open Access model.

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