Together with the editors and the National Contact Point Open Access OA2020-DE, De Gruyter is transforming the leading library journal Bibliothek Forschung und Praxis (BFP) into open access through the Subscribe to Open model. After a successful transformation, all journal content will be available immediately in gold open access on degruyter.com from 1 January 2021.
The pilot project if achieved will deliver a sustainable route to open access transformation for other journals in the humanities and social sciences. Institutions that subscribe to the journal continue to subscribe to it as usual. As long as existing subscriptions are maintained and extended, the journal will be published under a Creative Commons license and will be made freely available. If the number of subscriptions falls below a minimum value, the paywall is activated again and only subscribers are granted access.
The model allows the transformation of journals into open access without authors incurring costs in the form of Article Processing Charges (APCs), as is common in the natural sciences.
Bibliothek Forschung und Praxis has been committed to free access to information and knowledge since the journal was founded in 1977. The desire to make the BFP freely available in gold open access, without creating financial barriers for authors, led to the decision in favor of the Subscribe to Open model.
Carsten Buhr, Managing Director of De Gruyter, says: “Testing alternative transformation models besides Publish & Read is particularly important for our humanities and social sciences portfolio, where APC-based publishing has not been as widely adopted as in the natural sciences. To share our experiences with this model, we are also involved in the Subscribe to Open Community of Practice”.
Elmar Mittler, founding editor of the journal, adds: “For centuries, libraries have made the publication of academic journals possible through subscriptions. BFP is eager to test the new model with the help of De Gruyter’s publishing know-how to pave the way for open scientific communication, which has always been one of the journal’s most important goals”.
Dirk Pieper, Project Leader National Contact Point Open Access, says: “I am very pleased that the editors and publisher have chosen this model and that the journal will be published completely in open access. This is not only a signal to other library science journals, but to all journals in the humanities and social sciences that are not yet openly accessible. I am convinced that this model is an opportunity, especially for medium-sized and smaller German-language journals and specialist communities, to actively and sustainably shape the open access transformation.”
More information is available on the project landing page.