Why are the contracts with publishers not renewed?

The national goals and guidelines for open access to scientific articles demand that all Norwegian scientific articles funded with public money should be openly accessible by 2024.

The guidelines also demand that this goal should be reached without a cost increase. Unit, who negotiate on behalf of Norwegian higher education institutions, are currently in negotiations with several academic publishers. Some publishers have not been willing to comply with Unit’s demands:

  • Immediate open access to all published articles by researchers with affiliation to one of the consortium’s participating institutions
  • Reading access to all journals for participating institutions
  • Sustainable price model, which makes the transitions to open access possible
  • Openness surrounding terms of agreement

More information/concepts

Who are the Unit consortium?

Unit negotiates and manages 39 licensing contracts on behalf of Norwegian libraries – mainly within research, higher education, and hospitals, in the public sector. The contracts focus on access to digital resources such as, journals, referencing databases, dictionaries and encyclopedia.

Unit is also the national coordinator for open access in Norway. For more information in the Unit consortium, see their website.

What do we mean by open access?

Open access enables everyone to read, download, copy and use scientific publications – i.e. articles in scientific journals.

Open access to scientific literature is a premise for open research. Access to read scientific information increases

What is OA2020?

OA2020 is a global alliance committed to speed up the transition open access in scientific publishing. One of the measures applied to reach this goal, is converting existing scientific journals to open access journals. The fundamental principal of OA2020, supports by recent development and studies, is that the transition from a subscription based business model to a model that ensures the openness and reusability of research results is possible within current economic limits.

In Norway, Unit, NTNU, UiO, UiB, UiT and other institutions signed the OA2020 “Expression of Interest”.

What is plan S/coalition S?

Plan S is an initiative to ensure open access to scientific publications funded by national and European research councils and research funders (among these the Norwegian research council).

cOAlition S signals a commitment to ensure this open access (Plan S) within 1 January 2020, through such journals or platforms as fully support the requirements openly published scientific literature must meet.

Hybrid open publishing (paywall for articles in subscription journals) is not compatible with Plan S.

Open archives will remain essential in securing long-term access to archives and editorial innovation.

Funders will follow the development of Plan S compatible journals/platforms, and they will impose sanctions on those that are not compatible.

For more information, see the press release from the Norwegian research council.