How Subscription-based Scholarly Journals Can Convert to Open Access: A Review of Approaches

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This article reviews the ways through which subscription-based scholarly journals have converted to open access. The methodology included a comprehensive literature review of both the published and “gray” literature such as blog posts and press releases. Eight interviews were also conducted with stakeholders representing different parts of the scholarly publishing landscape. Strategies for conversion for different types of journals are presented at multiple levels (publishers, national, research funders, organizational etc.). The identified scenarios are split into two main categories, those that rely heavily on article processing charges (APCs), and those that can operate without relying on author-side financing. Despite there being interesting and important shared traits among many converted journals, individual circumstances largely dictate what options for conversion are viable for a journal. There is not one single solution that works for every journal, but rather a broad selection of different solutions among which selection should be well-informed.
Original languageEnglish
Peer-reviewed scientific journalLearned Publishing
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)259–269
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 19.09.2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article - refereed


  • 512 Business and Management
  • 113 Computer and information sciences


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