The field of particle physics, already known for its heavy use of the open access depository arXiv, is switching completely to open access publication. The Sponsoring Consortium for Open Access Publishing in Particle Physics (SCOAP3)–of which Georgia State University is a member–has negotiated with twelve particle physics journals to make 90% of papers published in the field immediately free to read by 2014, with no embargoes or barriers on the papers.
What will this mean to Georgia State researchers? Not any additional costs. Although these journals, and many others, require authors’ fees to publish open access, SCOAP3‘s members (including libraries and funding agencies) have pledged money that SCOAP3 will use to pay the fees. Georgia State researchers will not have to use Interlibrary Loan to access particle physics articles in journals we don’t subscribe to, but will be able to freely access the papers along with anyone else who wants to read them. Until the agreement begins in 2014, look for open access articles in arXiv or subscription articles in Web of Science or other library databases.
For more information on SCOAP3 and its open access initiative, check out this Nature news article or the SCOAP3 website. For more on open access and why it’s become perhaps the most important topic in scholarly communication, take a look at our Open Access Research Guide.