Elsevier recently reached its first ‘transformative’ read and publish agreement with a U.S. academic institution, Carnegie Mellon University, located in Pittsburgh, PA. Under the agreement, CMU will have access to all 3500 of Elsevier’s scholarly journals, and articles with a CMU corresponding author will be published open access starting January 1, 2020 (see CMU’s announcement).
Though specifics of CMU’s deal with Elsevier have not been shared, its outcome is similar to what the University of California was trying to achieve. UC held several months of talks with Elsevier in 2018 and early 2019 to secure a contract for sustainable payments inclusive of both subscription access to Elsevier’s journals and universal open access to UC-authored articles. Such goals were laid out in the Academic Senate’s principles on scholarly communication and in the University’s Call to Action for Negotiating Journal Agreements. Elsevier was unwilling to meet UC’s key goals, and thus UC ended its contract with Elsevier in 2019.
The UC negotiating team co-chairs congratulated CMU in a November 21 open statement. Each transformative open access publishing deal that gets signed around the world contributes to the transition to an open access scholarly publishing system. Though CMU has a very different make-up from UC, their success signals hope for other institutions to do the same.
We look forward to the opportunity to re-engage in conversations with Elsevier to achieve a cost-effective agreement on similar terms.–Ivy Anderson and Jeff MacKie-Mason, co-chairs of the UC-Elsevier Negotiating Team
The UCSF Library remains committed to providing access to new and unlicensed Elsevier journal content at no cost to UCSF researchers. Content licensed by UC in Elsevier journals through 2018 will continue to be accessible per our contract terms. See the Alternative Access help article for options accessing paywalled articles, and contact us if you have any questions.
Featured image: 20190628 CMU Fence by Dmitri Beljan, CC BY 2.0