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The Pricing of Academic Journals: A Two-Sided Market Perspective

Author

Listed:
  • Jeon, Doh-Shin
  • Rochet, Jean-Charles

Abstract

More and more academic journals adopt an open-access policy, by which articles are accessible free of charge, while publication costs are recovered through author fees. We study the consequences of this open access policy on a journal’s quality standard. If the journal’s objective was to maximize social welfare, open access would be optimal as long as the positive externalities generated by its diffusion exceed the marginal cost of distribution. However, we show that if an open access journal has a different objective (such as maximizing readers’ utility, the impact of the journal or its profit), it tends to choose a quality standard below the socially efficient level.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeon, Doh-Shin & Rochet, Jean-Charles, 2009. "The Pricing of Academic Journals: A Two-Sided Market Perspective," IDEI Working Papers 458, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  • Handle: RePEc:ide:wpaper:7208
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Mark Armstrong, 2006. "Competition in two‐sided markets," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(3), pages 668-691, September.
    2. Doh-Shin Jeon & Domenico Menicucci, 2006. "Bundling Electronic Journals and Competition among Publishers," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(5), pages 1038-1083, September.
    3. Jean‐Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2006. "Two‐sided markets: a progress report," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 37(3), pages 645-667, September.
    4. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2014. "Platform Competition in Two-Sided Markets," CPI Journal, Competition Policy International, vol. 10.
    5. Caillaud, Bernard & Jullien, Bruno, 2003. " Chicken & Egg: Competition among Intermediation Service Providers," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 34(2), pages 309-328, Summer.
    6. Mark McCabe, 2004. "Information goods and endogenous pricing strategies: the case of academic journals," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 12(10), pages 1-11.
    7. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:12:y:2004:i:10:p:1-11 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:3:p:720-737 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. McCabe Mark J & Snyder Christopher M., 2007. "Academic Journal Prices in a Digital Age: A Two-Sided Market Model," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-39, January.
    10. Mathias Dewatripont & Victor Ginsburgh & Patrick Legros & Alexis Walckiers & Jean-Pierre Devroey & Marianne Dujardin & Françoise Vandooren & Pierre Dubois & Jérôme Foncel & Marc Ivaldi & Marie-Dominiq, 2006. "Study on the economic and technical evolution of the scientific publication markets in Europe," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/9545, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    11. Jean-Charles Rochet & Jean Tirole, 2002. "Cooperation Among Competitors: Some Economics Of Payment Card Associations," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 33(4), pages 549-570, Winter.
    12. Simon P. Anderson & Stephen Coate, 2005. "Market Provision of Broadcasting: A Welfare Analysis," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(4), pages 947-972.
    13. Mark Armstrong, 2010. "Collection Sales: Good Or Bad For Journals?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 48(1), pages 163-176, January.
    14. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:3:p:645-667 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. repec:rje:randje:v:37:y:2006:3:p:668-691 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Mark J. McCabe & Christopher M. Snyder, 2005. "Open Access and Academic Journal Quality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 453-459, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D42 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Monopoly
    • L42 - Industrial Organization - - Antitrust Issues and Policies - - - Vertical Restraints; Resale Price Maintenance; Quantity Discounts
    • L82 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Entertainment; Media

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