Transformative Publishing Agreements

Transformative publishing agreements are contracts negotiated by libraries and publishers that seek to change the scholarly communications landscape by moving away from subscription-based models (pay-to-read) towards models focused on open access (pay-to-publish), often by including open access publishing fees (also called article processing charges or APCs) in the contract.

Transformative Publishing Agreements FAQ

The sections below summarize some questions you might have about publishing agreements at U of I. For more detailed information see Transformative Agreements: A Primer.

Why is the U of I Library Pursuing Transformative Publishing Agreements?

As a land grant university, the University of Idaho seeks to “shape the future through innovative thinking” and “expand the institution’s intellectual and economic impact” (Strategic Plan and Process | 2016-2025). One way that the U of I Library can contribute to this mission and vision is by supporting and advocating for new modes and economic models of scholarly communication.

The current pay-to-read scholarly communication model is financially unsustainable and unjust in how it limits access to publicly funded research and scholarship. Transformative publishing agreements undertaken by libraries and other institutions seek to shift scholarly publishing towards a more equitable model by focusing a larger share of their financial investment on open access models (pay-to-publish), which make research freely available to anyone, anywhere, rather than subscription-based models (pay-to-read), which disproportionately limit access to research and scholarship.

Transformative publishing agreements are just one way the U of I Library supports open access models of scholarly communication. Another is the University of Idaho – Open Access Publishing Fund (U of I – OAPF), which supports U of I authors in their efforts to publish in open access journals by paying article processing charges (APCs).

Changing the scholarly communication landscape will be challenging and require everyone involved in research and scholarship to work together, and the U of I Library remains committed to pursuing opportunities that serve both the reading and open access publishing needs of our affiliates.

What is a Read and Publish Agreement?

A read and publish agreement is a type of transformative agreement where both subscription fees and open access publishing fees, often called article processing charges (APCs), are combined into a single contract. With a read and publish agreement, the U of I Library not only pays subscription fees to a specific publisher, the Library also pays fees that give U of I affiliates the opportunity to make their articles open access.

With these agreements U of I affiliates can publish their research open access, with no out-of-pocket cost. Any open access article published under a read and publish agreement is paid for by the U of I Library and made available for anyone, anywhere to read immediately upon publication.

What is a Publish and Read Agreement?

A publish and read agreement is another type of transformative agreement where only open access publishing fees (APCs) are included in the contract; reading subscription-based articles is included at no additional charge.

Current Read and Publish Agreements