Eger, Scheufen and Meierrieks (2015)
|Eger, Scheufen and Meierrieks (2015)|
|Title:||The determinants of open access publishing: survey evidence from Germany|
|Author(s):||Thomas Eger, Marc Scheuen, Daniel Meierrieks|
|Citation:||Eger, T., Scheuen, M., and Meierreks, D. (2015) The determinants of open access publishing: survey evidence from Germany. Eur J Law Econ, 39, p475-503|
|Key Related Studies:|
|About the Data|
|Data Description:||The study consists of an online survey, with 2151 complete respondents. The survey was targeted at researchers from German universities, research organisations, and institutes, specifically in regards to experiences with open access publishing.|
|Data Type:||Primary data|
|Secondary Data Sources:|
|Data Collection Methods:|
|Data Analysis Methods:|
|Cross Country Study?:||No|
|Government or policy study?:||No|
|Time Period(s) of Collection:||
“We discuss the results of a survey conducted in the fall of 2012 and covering 2151 researchers in Germany. We show that there are significant differences between the scientific disciplines with respect to researchers’ awareness of, and experience with, both open access (OA) journals and self-archiving. Our results reveal that the relevance of OA within a discipline may explain why researchers from particular disciplines do (not) publish OA. Furthermore, several aspects like copyright law, age, profession or the inherent reward system of a discipline also play a role. Consequently, the paper emphasizes that a ‘‘one-size-fits-all’’ approach, as promoted by most recent policy initiatives, is unlikely to provide an effective framework for shaping the future of scholarly publishing.”
Main Results of the Study
Open access publishing is is most prevalent in: Biology and Life Sciences; Health Sciences; History and Archaeology, and; Physics and Astronomy (and noting that only 52% of respondents have ever published open access). Conversely, self-archiving practices are most common in Mathematics and Statistics, and Physics and Astronomy. Determinants of open access publishing are also stronger in disciplines where publication output is a more general measure of achievement. However, this does not apply to self-archiving behaviours.
Professional and senior researchers are more likely to have published in an open access journal and self-archived, though this likelihood decreases once a certain level of seniority has been attained.
The poor status or reputation of open access journals are the main concern for researchers who refrain from self-archiving, or publishing open access. The authors estimate that only 8.45% of researchers who have never published open access would maintain this stance if journals improved their reputation.
Policy Implications as Stated By Author
Amidst the push for open access, the study cautions policy makers to consider the main barriers to researchers who do not publish in open access journals:
As there is a reputational concern, introducing mandatory requirements to publish open access will force high-ranking scholars to contribute, in turn increasing the reputation of open access journals.
As researchers value an inalienable right to secondary publication following an embargo period, this should be ensured.
Business models should adapt to a subscription fee, rather than publication fee model.
As appropriate measures differ between disciplines, there may be context-specific factors which ensure the highest quality publications in open access journals.