Open Access monographs in Europe

Report explores the OA publishing landscape in eight European countries.

A report by Knowledge Exchange maps the OA book landscape in Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Netherlands, Norway and the UK.  

It explores author attitudes, OA monograph policies, funding streams and publishing models. The report includes a literature review, in-depth country-by-country studies, an overview of the OA monograph publishing landscape, stakeholder recommendations as well as descriptions of notable projects. 

Key findings 

OA monographs should be included in institutional OA policies

  • National policies are not consistent across the eight countries studied and only Austria has a coordinated approach
  • Some research funders (e.g. the ERC and Wellcome Trust) have begun to mandate books and book chapters are published OA and have made funding available
  • Linking to research assessment programmes will benefit the transition to OA monographs 

Business models for OA

  • For publishers, the move to OA requires changes to business models and workflows
  • However, publishers are expressing increasing interest in OA options and models
  • No single model or solution will fit all but publishers will benefit from learning from each other
  • University press models are providing interesting alternatives   

Funding streams

  • There are many different book publishing models
  • Libraries support OA monographs in many ways, from supplying information on funding options, managing publication funds or crowdfunding initiatives such as Knowledge Unlatched)
  • Funding is the main obstacle to the development of OA monographs 

Notable initiatives

This section features brief case studies covering a number of interesting themes, including: 

  • Library/University Press collaboration
  • New university press-traditional press collaboration
  • Including monographs in OA policies and moving towards mandates
  • Allowing monograph BPCs to be paid for from general OA publication funds
  • Co-ordinated approach to OA monographs
  • Collaborative funding
  • Public funding of an OA platform
  • Supporting infrastructure development to set up OA book publisher
  • Building a disciplinary academic community around a new publishing venture

 The report is designed to be dipped into and provides a fascinating study of interesting initiatives.

 The full report can be downloaded here.