US publisher Wiley signs “read and publish” deal with 138 UK universities

Seen as an alternative to a traditional subscription model between universities and publishers, “read and publish” deals involve both subscriptions and funding for ‘open access’, where researchers publish articles that are freely available to read, download, cite, share and build upon.

“This new agreement is a step-change in the transition to open access to UK research”

As part of the deal, the universities will gain access to Wiley’s subscription content. They will also be able to publish openly in Wiley’s journals without paying the article processing charges that are normally required.

Instead, the 138 institutions will convert some of their Wiley subscription expenditure into an Open Access fund, which will be used to support a financially sustainable route to open access.

The deal was brokered by Jiscresearch and education not-for-profit that negotiates licences and digital content agreements on behalf of UK universities. 

Under the new deal, the proportion of open access articles published by UK researchers is set to increase from 27% to an estimated 85% in year one, with the potential to reach 100% by 2022

Jisc told The PIE News that it is the second-largest journal agreement by spend in the UK and is the result of a two-year consultation with the participating institutions. 

“This new agreement is a step-change in the transition to open access to UK research,” said Liam Earney, executive director for digital resources at Jisc.  

“[It] offers all universities within the consortium, regardless of how much or little they publish, an opportunity to rapidly transition toward full and immediate open access in a financially sustainable way.”

Earney explained that it also recognises the importance of access to research materials for students and researchers generally, enabling all universities to access more Wiley content than before. 

Judy Verses, executive vice president at Wiley Research added:“By reaching this agreement, Wiley will further accelerate open access in the UK, reinforcing our commitment to keeping our customers at the centre of what we do.”

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