For some 2,500 Springer Nature journals, the APC (Article Processing Charges) – the publication costs incurred for Open Access publications – will soon become a matter of the past. The long-awaited second Project DEAL agreement was signed on 8 January 2020. After a similar agreement was reached with Wiley a year ago, this second agreement at national level now regulates the rights of use for Springer Nature journals.
The agreement enables scientists and scholars in Germany to publish Open Access in approximately 2,500 of the publisher's journals without APCs. Participating institutions also gain free access to all issues and volumes of almost the entire journal portfolio.
Project DEAL has been negotiating for years on behalf of the Alliance of German Science Organisations with the major science publishers for nationwide licences and fair pricing models. Springer Nature is one of the "Big Three" and is considered the second most important publisher for German scientific institutions. In signing this contract the project therefore sets a further milestone in the Open Access transformation of scientific publishing. Due to its big volume, the contract partners are talking about the largest Open Access transformation contract worldwide up until now.
Open Access Publishing: immediate benefits for the scientists and scholars of Leibniz Universität Hannover (LUH)
- Since 1 January 2020, LUH authors have automatically published Open Access in Springer Nature's hybrid journals without being billed (= journals with open choice option). Under the terms of the agreement, the costs are paid centrally by the TIB - Leibniz Information Centre for Science and Technology and the University Library.
This applies retroactively, the decisive factor is the date of online publication of the article ("online publication date").
- From 1 August 2020, LUH authors will no longer receive individual invoices for the publisher's Open Access journals (= Springer Open and BMC titles such as Scientific Reports and Nature Communications). Here too, the TIB will cover the costs centrally.
Applications for funding for APC invoices can still be submitted to the LUH Open Access Publication Fund until 1 August 2020. Please note the Fund's terms and conditions..
Further information on the contract and the Open Access publication opportunities can be found here.
On the cost limitation for Article Processing Charges
Together with the other libraries of TU9, the alliance of leading technical universities in Germany, the TIB is committed to a uniform cost limitation of 2,000 Euros including tax for APCs. However, this upper limit is not part of the contract conditions, so that in some cases higher APC costs may arise. They are nevertheless settled centrally by the TIB. This is done on the basis of special funds which LUH makes available for this purpose for a limited period of time. With this decision, the TIB and LUH recognise the special significance of this second DEAL contract for the German science landscape.