University of Pittsburgh Joins COPE

[Provided by the University of Pittsburgh]

University of Pittsburgh Joins Open Access Compact 

The University of Pittsburgh has joined 16 other leading research institutions as a signatory to the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity (COPE). 

Participation in COPE is the university’s latest move in support of Open Access to scholarly research.  Through this program, the University Library System, University of Pittsburgh (ULS) seeks to encourage a new business model to cover the cost of publishing research results in Open Access journals without cost barriers to the global research community.  The program will subsidize fees charged to eligible Pitt authors to publish in most Open Access journals.  Details on the program can be found at http://oscp.library.pitt.edu/author-fees-fund/.

Open Access journals now number over 8,000, and most provide all the guarantees of academic quality controlled through rigorous peer review of content.  At the same time, Open Access journals benefit from wider distribution and discoverability of their content by eliminating the barriers of cost and limited access associated with traditional subscription-based journals. 

The ULS’s longstanding commitment to Open Access encompasses a significant publishing program including 33 peer-reviewed e-journals; six subject-based repositories; D‑Scholarship@Pitt, the Open Access repository for the University’s scholarly output; and training, outreach, and advocacy programs to support Open Access.

”The ULS is strongly committed to open access publishing, both as a publisher and host for open access journals and as a consumer of information.  The traditional subscription-based model for academic publishing characterized by escalating costs and the growing commercialization of knowledge runs counter to academic culture and tradition.  We believe that new knowledge should be shared widely in a manner that is as unfettered as possible.  By joining the growing movement to assist our faculty to publish in true Open Access platforms, we are simply following our commitment to a logical next phase,” said Rush Miller, Hillman University Librarian and Director of the ULS. 

The University Library System (ULS), University of Pittsburgh is the 22nd largest academic library system in North America. Under the administration of the Hillman University Librarian and Director, it includes 15 libraries and holds more than 6.4 million volumes, world specialized collections, and major foreign language materials from around the world.  The ULS offers state-of-the-art facilities and services, including innovative digital library collections and services and a robust Open Access publishing program. For more information about the University Library System (ULS), University of Pittsburgh, visit http://www.library.pitt.edu.


University of Utah is First COPE Signer of 2012

[Reprinted from the University of Utah announcement]

Open-access to Scholarly Publishing More Available Than Ever    

Joining an international group of academic and research institutions, the University of Utah’s J. Willard Marriott Library is becoming a signatory to the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity (COPE). The goal of the compact is to make it easier for researchers to publish articles through open-access journals, which are available online at no charge to readers.

Open-access journals provide scholarly articles with no subscription fees or restrictions on access. Open access is growing in popularity as a venue for publishing research. Providing the same services available through traditional scholarly journals, such as a peer-review process, filtering, production and distribution, open-access journals allow a wider audience to access scholarly articles than ever before.

To eliminate obstacles to publication, institutions that sign on to COPE are committed to underwriting article-processing charges for articles written by their faculty and accepted for publication to fee-based open access journals.

“Supporting our scholars in publishing with open access titles has the potential to disseminate their scholarship to a larger audience than subscription-­‐based journals. Institutions and individuals that cannot afford subscriptions can access the materials without cost barriers,” says Joyce Ogburn, Dean of the Marriott Library and the University Librarian for the University of Utah. “Through open access publishing, the university’s cutting-­‐edge, high quality research can be shared with a global audience.” 


Helmholtz Association supports COPE

[Reprinted from the Helmholtz Assocation announcement]

Helmholtz Association supports open-access publishing

Open access, the free access to scientific information, is an advanced publication strategy that has been officially promoted by the Helmholtz Association since 2004. To facilitate straightforward funding of scientific publications in open-access journals, the Helmholtz Association is now supporting the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity (COPE).

Open access improves the public perception of research results and facilitates working in digital research environments. In 2004, the Helmholtz Association was the first of the large German research organisations to approve recommendations for open-access publishing and is supporting the transformation of scientific publishing towards open access in many ways. Scientists of the Helmholtz Association are increasingly publishing in open-access journals. These journals are often financing free access to their content by publication fees that are covered by the authors' research institutions.

The research centres of the Helmholtz Association have now declared their support of the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity (COPE) and their willingness to establish sustainable mechanisms for the payment of reasonable open-access publishing fees. It is of primary concern to the Helmholtz Association that publishing in open-access journals will be as easy for its scientists as in journals with conventional financing. „We would like to press ahead with the change towards a sustainable and innovative system of scholarly communication. Open access is the publication strategy of the future“, says Dr. Rolf Zettl, managing director of the Helmholtz Association.

The international initiative COPE has been started by Harvard University, the MIT and other leading US universities to advance open-access publishing. In October 2011, the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) has been the first research institution in Germany to sign COPE. The setting-up of a publication fund to finance open-access publishing fees at KIT is an example for the open-access activities of the Helmholtz Centres. With the support of the Helmholtz Open Access Project, the research centres have already entered several open-access contracts with international scientific publishers.


Karlsruhe Institute of Technology is First German COPE Signatory

[Karlsruhe Institute of Technology has become the first German university to sign the Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity. The official announcement is reprinted below. KIT is a member of the Helmholtz Association, which has also expressed its support of COPE.]

KIT Signs Compact for Open Access Publishing Equity (COPE)

KIT signs the international Compact for Open Access Publishing Equity (COPE) and now is among the renowned international supporters of open access publishing.

On the occasion of the worldwide Open Access Week, important news are reported by Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT): The Presidential Committee of KIT as the first German research institution signed the Compact for Open Access Publishing Equity (COPE) on October 26. The COPE international initiative was initiated by leading US universities, e.g. Harvard and MIT, and is an important element for supporting open access publishing: By their signature, the participating education and research institutions undertake to establish at their institutions sustainable mechanisms for the complete or partial take-over of open access publication fees. COPE leaves the choice of methods and models of implementation to every institution.

By signing COPE, KIT makes another important step towards supporting sustainable science communication with new types of open access publishing to improve free access to scientific findings. Establishment of new, special open access funds is necessary, as publishing companies charge a fee for the publication and organization of quality assurance, which is to be paid by the authors or their institutions. Although this publication fee ensures the price transparency of the scientific journal market distorted by oligopolies, which has long been demanded by libraries, it also prevents many scientists from publishing in open access journals. Establishment of the special publication fund initiated by COPE will reduce the obstacles to open access publishing in the long term and facilitate the decision of scientists in favor of publishing in a journal of this type.

The decision of the Presidential Committee to join COPE is based on previous fruitful work at KIT, where the ideas of COPE have already been implemented since the beginning of this year. In early 2011, the KIT publication fund was established. It is administrated by the KIT Library and supports publications in peer-reviewed journals with publication fees of less than EUR 2000. Financing is based on funds granted by the German Research Foundation (DFG) that has been providing funding for the establishment of a central, institutional publication fund under a special funding line since 2009.

Based on these previous activities, joining of COPE is aimed at supporting the new infrastructure measures relating to the KIT publication fund and at turning this scheme into a permanent funding structure.

KIT unterzeichnet Compact for Open Access Publishing Equity (COPE)

Passend zur weltweiten Open Access Week hat das Präsidium des Karlsruher Instituts für Technologie (KIT) am 26. Oktober den Compact for Open Access Publishing Equity (COPE) unterzeichnet.

Das KIT als erste deutsche Forschungseinrichtung, die COPE unterzeichnet hat, reiht sich damit ein unter die Förderer des zukunftsträchtigen Open-Access-Publikationswegs.

Die internationale Initiative COPE wurde von führenden US-Universitäten wie Harvard und MIT initiiert und ist ein weiterer Baustein für die Förderung des Open-Access-Publizierens: Durch die Unterzeichnung verpflichten sich die teilnehmenden Bildungs- und Forschungseinrichtungen, in ihren Institutionen nachhaltige Mechanismen der vollständigen oder teilweisen Übernahme von Open-Access-Publikationsgebühren einzurichten. Der COPE lässt jeder Einrichtung bei der Wahl der Methoden und Modelle der Umsetzung freie Hand.

Mit der Unterzeichnung geht das KIT einen weiteren, wichtigen Schritt hin zur Förderung einer nachhaltigen Wissenschaftskommunikation, die neue Publikationsformen im Umfeld des Open-Access-Publizierens fördert und so den freien Zugang zu wissenschaftlichen Erkenntnissen verbessert: Der Aufbau neuer, spezieller Open-Access-Fördertöpfe ist notwendig, da Verlage in der Regel von Autoren beziehungsweise ihren Einrichtungen eine Gebühr für die Publikation und Organisation des Qualitätssicherungsprozesses verlangen.

Diese Publikationsgebühr bringt zwar endlich die von Bibliotheken lang geforderte Preistransparenz in den von Oligopolen verzerrten wissenschaftlichen Zeitschriftenmarkt, aber sie hält auch viele Wissenschaftler davon ab, in Open Access Journals zu publizieren. Die Einrichtung der vom COPE initiierten speziellen Förderungsfonds baut so langfristig Hemmnisse gegen das Open-Access-Publizieren ab und erleichtert Wissenschaftlern die Entscheidung für die Veröffentlichung in einer Zeitschrift nach diesem Geschäftsmodell.

Der Beitrittsbeschluss des Präsidiums baut auf fruchtbaren Arbeiten am KIT auf, denn hier werden die Ideen des COPE bereits seit Beginn des Jahres in die Tat umgesetzt: Seit 2011 existiert der von der KIT-Bibliothek verwaltete KIT-Publikationsfonds, der Veröffentlichungen in peer-reviewed-Zeitschriften mit Publikationsgebühren von unter 2000 Euro bezuschusst. Die Finanzierung erfolgt aus Mitteln der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft, die seit 2009 über eine spezielle Förderlinie finanzielle Mittel für den Aufbau von zentralen, institutionseigenen Publikationsfonds bereitstellt.

Der Beitritt zu COPE soll aufbauend auf diesen praktischen Vorarbeiten auch ein Zeichen setzen, damit die neuen infrastrukturellen Maßnahmen, die mit der Etablierung des KIT-Publikationsfonds verbunden waren, am KIT verstetigt und in eine dauerhafte Förderstruktur überführt werden.


FWF Austrian Science Fund supports COPE

[Reprinted from the FWF Austrian Science Fund announcement]

FWF supports an international Open Access initiative

The FWF supports the initiative "The Compact for Open-Access Publishing Equity" (COPE) which requires that all scholarly publications should not only be freely available but also financially supported by research institutions and funding agencies.


Meanwhile, this initiative is supported by 13 Nobelists and a number of highly prestigious institutions such as Harvard, Cornell, Duke, MIT, Columbia, Berkeley, Wellcome Trust or CERN.

In line with this initiative, the FWF funds refereed Open Access publications of all disciplines in journals since 2004 as well as proceedings, collected volumes or books since 2009.


Dr. Falk Reckling