In the transition from the traditional business model for academic journals to open access, funding poses a significant obstacle. The objective of the OPus foundation is to facilitate the transition to OA by reducing the publication costs, among other things by keeping publishing activities in the hands of the academic community as much as possible. The costs of the publishing platform form a bottleneck here. Cost can be saved through as many partners as possible using the same infrastructure, provided this infrastructure operates free from commercial motives.

Objective:         

Offering a centrally-funded publishing platform for peer reviewed journals at the national level (with the option of expanding later) keeping the entry costs per joining journal low and non-recurring and the contribution per published article minimal.

This objective also challenges the monopoly of traditional publishers: academics now have the opportunity to take charge of professional publication themselves. The project’s aim is to ensure a competitive publication environment and unrestricted access to science for both readers and authors. Our ultimate goal is an entirely new model for the distribution of responsibilities in ‘gold’ Open Access journal publishing:

cjm

distributed

The first chart represents the Traditional Journal Model, in which all functions and roles are handled by the publisher, who also owns the content. The other chart proposes the new distributed journal model, in which functions and roles are distributed amongst various parties and are not exclusively owned by any of them.

Work method:   

The first steps are the following: a.) acquiring support for the concept; b.) approaching potential sponsors; c.) setting up a Programme of Requirements for the platform; and d.) organising a tender for the implementation. During a number of brainstorm sessions, the important approaches and variables will be discussed and valued, resulting in a selection of important criteria and possible business models, based on which those involved will decide on the best course of action and partners.

Results so far:

Consultation took place with SURF, and a Programme of Requirements has been established. Jeroen Sondervan has been assigned as Project Manager, and the important criteria and available business models have been established.