ACS agrees 'transformative' deal in Spain

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Researchers affiliated with institutions of the Conference of Rectors of Spanish Universities (Crue) and the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) will now be able to publish their research articles open access with no additional costs, following a 'read and publish' agreement with the Publications Division of the American Chemical Society (ACS).

ACS has similar agreements with 328 other institutions in over 20 countries. Researchers in European markets increasingly find themselves required to publish open access. To meet this need, ACS is developing transformative agreements that enable institutions to ensure their researchers can publish in the world’s premier chemistry journals and meet their funders’ terms.

'A transformative read and publish agreement is intended to help ease the transition away from a subscription model for scholarly publications and toward an open access model,' said Sybille Geisenheyner, director, open science strategy and licensing at ACS. 'Hundreds of researchers across the participating 49 institutions in Spain will be able to publish open access in 75 of ACS’ hybrid and open access journals without additional charge. At the same time, institutions’ libraries will maintain access to subscription content for thousands of users seeking high-quality chemistry content.'

'This agreement is special with respect to the rest of the transformative agreements that we have recently signed because it is the first that focuses on a single scientific discipline and the first that covers both hybrid titles and open access publications,' added Jesús Marco, Ph.D., vice president of scientific and technical research at CSIC. 'We are convinced that the CSIC Chemical Sciences community will recognize the qualitative leap represented by this alliance. This agreement is part of our organization’s strategy to move away from the traditional licensing model, which is based on subscribing to content and paying for reading it, and toward a reading and publishing model. It is a commitment to open access as a lever for the promotion of open science.'

Across Europe, funders have recently begun implementing new requirements for the researchers to whom they provide funding. Many researchers must now publish only in fully 'gold' journals – journals that are 100 per cent open access. However, for a transitional period, researchers at institutions with a transformative read and publish agreement can continue to publish in hybrid journals, including prestigious titles, such as the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

'With this transformative agreement, the fourth so far this year, Crue continues to fulfill the commitment made to its members at the General Assembly of February 2019, regarding the promotion of open science through open access publication of the results of the work carried out by researchers at their universities,' said Francisco Mora, who is vice president of Crue, president of the open science working group, and was rector of the Universitat Politècnica de València during the negotiation with ACS. Mora added that the agreement would allow 'both researchers and Spanish citizens as a whole to have more and new resources to approach science without limitations and to learn about the latest findings.'

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