Springer Nature negotiations aim to secure a transitional open access agreement

UK institutions are in negotiation with Springer Nature to secure a transitional open access (OA) agreement for the Nature, Nature research journals and Palgrave journals. A proposal that meets the requirements of the sector has not yet been provided.

In accordance with UKRI OA policy, while Springer Nature provides a compliant route to OA publishing in Nature, Nature research journals and Palgrave journals via immediate publishing of the Version of Record OA under a CC BY licence, authors (and their institutions) who submitted manuscripts after 1 April are not able to use UKRI OA funds to pay for article processing charges (APCs) in these titles as they are hybrid journals and not part of a transitional arrangement that meets the sector’s requirements.

In recognition that negotiations are ongoing, Springer Nature is seeking to register these titles as Jisc-approved transformative journals and to meet requirement 1.2 for UKRI-funded authors during the period 1 April 2022 to 31 December 2022. 

Springer Nature is currently in the application process for approval of these titles to become transformative journals.

If the application is successful, two routes will be available to UKRI authors: deposit of the accepted manuscript with no embargo and with CC BY or gold OA (paying an APC).

If the title is a Jisc-approved transformative journal, UKRI OA funds may be used for associated OA charges. If the title is not accepted as a Jisc transformative journal, UKRI OA funds may not be used. Authors are advised to consult their institution regarding use of UKRI funds to cover APCs.

Springer Nature has also stated that it will ‘guarantee a compliant route to publication for UKRI-funded corresponding authors submitting to these titles from 1 April 2022 to 31 December 2022’. Prior to any accepted transitional arrangement, authors will need to follow Springer Nature’s process to take advantage of this guarantee, as set out in the Springer Nature frequently asked questions.

Since a compliant route is not necessarily a route that is eligible for UKRI OA funds, it is advisable for authors to include the licensing notification statement in their article submissions if they wish to make use of this guarantee.  

Authors can check the status of Nature, Nature research journals and Palgrave journals at Sherpa and Journal Checker Tool.