Springer Nature and Bibsam Consortium agree TA for Nature and the Nature Research journals

Springer Nature today announces a second Transformative Agreement (TA) to include its flagship title Nature. The agreement with the Bibsam Consortium in Sweden enables researchers affiliated with 10 initial institutions to publish their research articles accepted for publication in Nature and the Nature Research journals immediately open access (OA). This is at no cost to the individual researchers, as OA costs are covered by the consortium deal. 

This new agreement builds on Springer Nature and Bibsam’s long-standing OA partnership which also sees their existing 2019 agreement renewed and extended. This will now not only cover OA publishing in Springer Nature’s fully OA journals and over 2,000 hybrid journals, but also include Palgrave and Academic journals, providing even more options for Swedish authors across more disciplines. Participating institutions will also have access to extended subscribed content. 

Carrie Webster, VP Open Access, Springer Nature, commented: “We are incredibly proud that our current agreement with Bibsam has enabled over 90% of research content to be published OA, covering a large proportion of Sweden’s research output. This demonstrates the crucial role TA’s are playing in making publicly funded research immediately and openly accessible to all on publication, and enabling entire countries’ research output to flip to OA.” 

“Bibsam is a longstanding partner of ours in enabling and supporting a sustainable OA transition. We are delighted to be able to renew and extend our current TA and offer our second TA for Nature – it marks an exciting moment in our joint OA journey and support for global research.”

Anna Lundén, Acting Director, Libraries Collaboration and Research Support Department, National Library of Sweden said: “We are very pleased to have extended our partnership further with Springer Nature in order to support researchers in Sweden in the transition to open access. This new agreement with Springer Nature offers the opportunity to publish primary research articles in Nature, and the Nature Research journals, covering the costs for Swedish researchers to publish OA”.

The volume of OA articles achieved with this renewal and additional Nature TA, combined with the fact that OA articles are downloaded on average six times more than non-OA articles and cited 1.6 times more, means even greater reach and impact for Swedish researchers and Sweden-funded research. Lead author Melanie During of Uppsala University in Sweden has already benefited from the impact of the agreement, authoring the first OA paper in Nature published as part of the deal. The paper which pinpointed the season that marked the end of the dinosaur era generated over 700 global news stories and has already been accessed over 32,000 times.

Speaking of the value and impact OA has had on their paper, Melanie During commented: “We believe that for the general public to understand and have more trust in science, having easy access to research, is the first step. We therefore wanted to make sure that everyone can read our work, access and download our data and study what we did. And we can see that this is happening. Within a week our paper has been read 32,000 times and almost 80% of our readers belong to the general public, which is amazing!”

Since OA options were introduced for Nature and the Nature Research Journals, Springer Nature has entered into discussions around TAs for the portfolio with existing partners. These can take time due to the selectivity of the portfolio, the uniqueness of the non-primary research content in these journals, and the level of publishing in different institutions and countries. TA’s are not a one size fits all approach. The Nature TA for Bibsam is the second that the publisher has agreed, following Max Planck Digital Library ( MPDL). Finding a sustainable transitional model with Bibsam is therefore a key indication of the publisher’s commitment to further enabling OA publishing for its flagship title.

Springer Nature continues to support all authors regardless of discipline, location or funding, to publish OA. The publisher’s 17 national agreements, which alongside its institutional deals, now support researchers from over 2,650 affiliated institutions to publish OA, enabling an expected 41,400+ OA articles to be published a year, 10% more than any other publisher. Last year, the publisher was the first to immediately publish one million gold open access primary research and review articles, supporting nearly 2.5 million authors in making their research OA.