European open access "Plan S"

In September 2018, a group of European government funding agencies announced the creation of cOAlition S, an organization created to implement “Plan S”. Plan S is an initiative to ensure that “by 2020 scientific publications that result from research funded by public grants […] must be published in compliant Open Access Journals or on compliant Open Access Platforms.”

Plan S is built on several principles, which are summarized below (see here for the official list of principles):

  • All publications must be published under an open license (for example Creative Commons (CC-BY)).
  • Funders will establish quality requirements for the compliant Open Access journals.
  • Funders will support the creation of high-quality Open Access journals in cases where they are not available.
  • The Funders and universities will, where applicable, cover publication costs, not the individual researcher.
  • Publications fees for Open Access journals will be standardized and capped.
  • The “hybrid” model of publishing is not compliant with Plan S.
  • Compliance will be monitored and sanctions will be applied in case of non-compliance.

For more information about Plan S, you can visit the official website here.

As the negotiations regarding Plan S are still ongoing, some of the aspects of the plan detailed above may be subject to change in the future. For instance, the “hybrid” model of publishing may be accepted after all. This article contains more up to date information.

Many researchers have expressed concern at the implementation of this plan. More information about their position can be found here.

There is also an open letter circulating promoting Plan S. You can find more information here.

VOX also recently published an article detailing the views of two researchers from our own University. Read it here.

There is also an alternative to Plan S named Plan U. More info here.