Ludo Waltman is professor of Quantitative Science Studies at the Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS) at Leiden University. Ludo serves as Editor-in-Chief of Quantitative Science Studies, the official journal of the ISSI society. He previously served as Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Informetrics.
Open access publishing in Quantitative Science Studies – An update
Quantitative Science Studies (QSS), the official journal of the International Society for Scientometrics and Informetrics (ISSI), is a gold open access journal. All articles published in the journal are openly accessible for readers. To cover the cost of running the journal, authors of articles published in QSS are requested to pay an article processing charge (APC). When QSS was established in 2019, ISSI and MIT Press, the publisher of QSS, agreed to set the APC to USD 600 for ISSI members and USD 800 for non-members. For authors who did not have funds to cover the APC, TIB – Leibniz Information Centre for Science and Technology and University Library, supported by the University of Konstanz, made available a generous subsidy. This subsidy, which was facilitated by the Fair Open Access Alliance, has enabled QSS to guarantee that anyone can publish in the journal regardless of their access to funding.
For articles submitted after December 31, 2022, ISSI and MIT Press have agreed to increase the APC of QSS. For ISSI members, the APC will be increased from USD 600 to USD 750. For non-members, it will be increased from USD 800 to USD 1200. ISSI and MIT Press are committed to keeping the APC of QSS as low as possible, and neither the society nor MIT Press are making a profit with the journal. Nevertheless, the APC increase is necessary to cover the increased costs of publishing QSS and to guarantee the financial sustainability of the journal. Production costs, which include copyediting, proofreading, and composition for QSS, have accelerated significantly with inflation. We emphasize that the APC of QSS is still substantially below that of most journals in the field.
The subsidy made available by TIB will end at the end of 2022. For articles accepted for publication in QSS after December 31, 2022, the subsidy will not be available anymore. ISSI, MIT Press, and the editorial team of QSS are currently exploring new sources of funding to cover APCs for authors without their own funds. We expect to be able to continue waiving APCs for authors without funds, but most likely our policy for waiving APCs will be less generous. More detailed information will be provided soon.
ISSI and MIT Press recognize the challenges of APC-based open access publishing. In the future, we hope to consider alternative models for funding open access publishing in QSS. We very much welcome ideas and suggestions from the community.