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The Stratified Economics of Open Access


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  • John Willinsky

    (School of Education, Stanford University, 485 Lasuen Mall, Stanford, CA 94305-3096, USA)

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    There is a growing recognition within the academic community that ‘open access’ to research and scholarship can increase its value and reach. A variety of open access models have developed over the last twenty years, including author self-archiving, immediate (sponsored) open access, delayed open access, and article-processing-fee open access. Yet the economics of open access is being largely determined, at this point, by the interests of a stratified scholarly publishing market that can be roughly divided among independent journals, scholarly society publishers, and commercial publishers. Each of these market segments is experimenting with forms of open access that hold promise for sustaining, if not extending, the segment’s current position. This paper reviews the economics of these open access models, while drawing attention to the consequences of this market stratification for access to knowledge and the sustainability of scholarly publishing as a whole.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Queensland University of Technology (QUT), School of Economics and Finance in its journal Economic Analysis and Policy (EAP).

    Volume (Year): 39 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1 (March)
    Pages: 53-70

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    Handle: RePEc:eap:articl:v39:y:2009:i:1:p:53-70

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    Related research

    Keywords: Higher Education Research Institutions;

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    Blog mentions

    As found by, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. The Economics of Open Access Publishing
      by Christian Zimmermann in RePEc blog on 2009-04-24 01:43:24
    2. Open Publishing: Open Access Week
      by Christian Zimmermann in Against Monopoly on 2009-10-22 00:36:46
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    Cited by:
    1. Matteo Migheli & Giovanni Ramello, 2013. "Open access, social norms and publication choice," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 35(2), pages 149-167, April.


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