Without a fuller embrace of repositories, the transition with be slow, partial and siloed, says Kathleen Shearer, executive director of COAR (Confederation of Open Access Repositories)
(9 Aug 2022) The Plan S requirement for immediate open access has further fuelled the debate. In a recent article published in Times Higher Education, Springer Nature’s chief publishing officer, Stephen Inchcoombe, argues that transformative agreements (TAs) are the fastest route towards full open access. Yet these agreements – which allow researchers to both access journals’ subscription content and to publish in them open access – are only available to institutions or countries with the substantial funds required to pay for them. In addition, they sometimes take years to negotiate and, because most institutions will not be able to afford TAs with all publishers, they lock researchers into publishing in specific venues.
Moreover, TAs do not transform journals to open access, but make individual articles available for a fee. While such “transformative journals” are supposedly on a path to becoming fully open access, the real direction of travel is questionable. As such, transformative agreements alone will only result in a slow and partial transition to open access, with content remaining siloed in various publisher platforms.
Here’s the article in full.