In the negotiations on university access to publicly funded publications, swissuniversities was able to successfully conclude a Read-and-Publish agreement with the major publishers Elsevier and Springer Nature in 2020, and with Wiley in 2021. In addition to the negotiations conducted by swissuniversities with the major publishers Elsevier, Springer Nature and Wiley, negotiations are also being conducted with other publishers. These negotiations are being conducted by the Consortium of Swiss Academic Libraries and the ETH Library.
- Wiley: In spring 2021, an agreement was reached with Wiley. This enables access to all Wiley journals. In addition, authors of ETH Zurich can publish open access in almost all journals of Wiley without incurring any costs. Further information on the agreement with Wiley can be found in the news item of 29 April 2021.
- Elsevier: A read & publish agreement was concluded with Elsevier in Spring 2020. Members of ETH Zurich not only have access to almost all journals on ScienceDirect but have also been able to publish free of charge with open access in all journals of Elsevier since spring 2020. For more information on the agreement with Elsevier, see the news item of 15 April 2020.
- Springer Nature: A read & publish agreement was also concluded with Springer Nature this summer, enabling members of ETH Zurich to publish free of charge in almost all Springer Nature journals with open access since 1 July 2020. In addition, the ETH Zurich community is also given access to almost all of the publisher’s journals. Further details of the agreement with Springer Nature are reported in the news item of 1 July 2020. A separate agreement allows authors affiliated with ETH Zurich to publish free of charge through ETH Library in the Gold Open Access journals of the Springer imprints BioMed Central and SpringerOpen. The agreement with Springer Nature expires at the end of 2022 and the renewal negotiations will be conducted in spring 2022.
- American Institute of Physics (AIP): The agreement enables members of ETH Zurich to publish in all hybrid AIP journals. This agreement applies to all articles with an acceptance date in 2022.
- American Chemical Society (ACS): Negotiations with ACS have been ongoing since 2020. To date, no agreement has been reached. The existing Read agreement was renewed with a reduced price increase for 2022. The negotiations will be continued in 2022.
- Cambridge University Press: Since 2021, members of ETH Zurich can publish in all Cambridge University Press journals, including gold-open-access publications. This agreement applies to all articles published in 2021 or later. In addition, members now also have Read access to all Cambridge University Press journals published since 1997.
- Company of Biologists: From 2022, members of ETH Zurich may publish without limitation in all hybrid Company of Biologists journals.
- IEEE: From 2022, members of ETH Zurich can publish articles in all gold-open-access publications of IEEE. Although hybrid journals are excluded for the time being, negotiations will continue in 2022. In the case of hybrid journals, you have the possibility to publish in the Research Collection via green open access. At IEEE, this usually coincides with publication in the journal.
- Institute of Physics (IOP): Members of ETH Zurich may publish without limitation in all IOP publications, including gold open access publications. This excludes the journals of the Electrochemical Society (ECS) and the American Astronomical Society (AAS). This agreement applies to all articles with an acceptance date in 2022.
- Karger: From 2022, members of ETH Zurich may publish in all Karger open-access journals. This agreement applies to all articles with an acceptance date in 2021 or later. In addition, members now have Read access to the entire Karger journal portfolio from 1998 onwards.
- MIT Press – Direct to Open (D2O): Since 2022, the ETH Library supports the Direct to Open programme (D2O) of MIT Press. Through D2O, part of the publisher’s books is transferred from the traditional purchase model to a collaborative open-access model that is supported by libraries worldwide. No costs are incurred for authors published in the programme books.
- Oxford University Press (OUP): Negotiations with OUP have been ongoing since 2020. As of April 2022, OUP and the Consortium have not been able to agree on the terms for a read & publish license. As a consequence, negotiations with OUP are suspended until further notice (No Deal). Access to content until 2021 is guaranteed. Articles from January 2022 onwards are no longer freely accessible. Further information
- Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC): The agreement with the Royal Society of Chemistry was concluded in 2018. It is the first Read & Publish agreement that the ETH Library and the Consortium of Swiss University Libraries have been able to conclude. Members of the ETH Zurich can publish in all hybrid journals of the Royal Society of Chemistry without limitation.
- SAGE: The agreement enables members of ETH Zurich to publish in all hybrid SAGE journals. This agreement applies to all articles with an acceptance date of 2021 or later.
- Taylor & Francis: Members of ETH Zurich can publish in virtually all hybrid and gold journals of Taylor & Francis. This agreement applies to all articles with an acceptance date of 2021 or later.
- Trans Tech Publications: Along with unlimited access to the entire Trans Tech Publications journal portfolio, members of ETH Zurich can now publish for free in all of the publisher’s journals. This agreement applies to all articles with an acceptance date in 2021.
Frequently asked questions: About the negotiations
Licensing and publishing situation
Licensing: Current agreements for access to the content of major scientific, technical and medical (STM) publishers see high annual fee increases and most often do not comply with national and funder’s strategies and policies on open access.
Publishing: More and more researchers are publishing their results open access. Meanwhile, hybrid journals practice double-dipping (charging separately for subscription access and gold open access publishing), and fees for this publishing model are high and continue to rise.
What are the key aspects of the recent negotiations?
The negotiating team has clear objectives that they want to reach on behalf of all Swiss institutions of higher education.
- Licensing and open access go hand in hand: Articles published by Swiss university researchers in journals belonging to the aforementioned three publishers must be immediately released in open access format.
- Publishers must grant ongoing access to all of their journal content as part of the deal.
- Cost neutrality: No open access = no price increase. If a contractual agreement with publishers on open access cannot be reached, future price increases should not be accepted.
- Transparency for licensing deals: No non-disclosure clauses in the agreements.
Can you explain the different licensing models?
Traditional licensing models for accessing scientific publications are often based on the size of the subscribing institution (number of full-time employees) and historical print subscription expenses. These agreements do not take into account the institution’s expenses for gold open access publishing (article processing charges, or APCs). Annual fee increases on these agreements vary on average from 3% to 6% or even higher.
Transformative agreements aim to bundle negotiated pricing conditions for accessing scientific publications and publishing services in a single agreement in order to streamline expenses and prevent double-dipping.
- Read & publish agreement
This type of contract bundles a fixed-sum payment for reading (providing access to a publisher’s journal portfolio for the subscribing institution) and publishing (allowing the authors affiliated with the institution to publish open access without paying individual APCs).
- Publish & read agreement
In this agreement model, institutions pay the publishers only for their open access publishing services. The price is determined based on the institution’s publishing activity, and the authors affiliated with the institution can choose to publish open access without paying individual APCs. Access to the journal portfolio is included at no additional cost.
What is the mandate of swissuniversities?
A team commissioned by swissuniversities has been negotiating since January 2019 with the three major publishers Elsevier, Springer Nature and Wiley to find a satisfactory agreement for the Swiss scientific community based on the read & publish principle.
The team negotiates on behalf of all Swiss institutions of higher education, including EPF Lausanne and ETH Zurich.
Individual institutions have agreed not to run parallel negotiations with these three publishers until the objectives of the current negotiations have been met.
Solidarity with this initiative implies acceptance of a no-deal situation (no subscriptions, no access) after current agreements lapse if the negotiation objectives are not achieved.
What is the mission of the Consortium of Swiss Academic Libraries?
In addition to the major publishers, the Consortium of Swiss Academic Libraries negotiates with various other publishers regarding Read-and-Publish solutions and has already successfully concluded numerous agreements. In contrast to the negotiations with the major publishers, the individual participating institutions are actively involved in the negotiations.
What are the tasks of the ETH Library?
Except for the negotiations with the major publishers, the ETH Library is actively involved in the negotiations of the Consortium of the Swiss University Libraries. In a working group with the other participating institutions, the offers are discussed jointly and negotiation steps are planned. In addition, the ETH Library negotiates with all publishers where no consortium licence is available.