Author Archive

Stretching irony

Posted in Books and publishing, open access on August 28th, 2015

You’re writing a guide to local trails. Those trails are free. Your guide must therefore be free. Right?

You’re doing (unfunded) research on the nature of contemporary radio. Radio is free to the listener. Therefore, you won’t charge anybody for the book based on your research. Right?

I could provide many more such absurd, well, let’s call them sillygisms, since to call them syllogisms would be silly.

But then there’s:

You’re writing a guide to/doing unfunded research on/publishing about open access. Therefore, it’s ironic if you charge for it.

Huh?

Yep, here it comes again, just as it did in the first review when ALA Editions published Open Access: What You Need to Know Now (which was my writing, not an ALA official proceedings). This time, it’s the Library Technology Reports issue, which is apparently finally out. And an almost immediate tweet calling it ironic that the OA-related report requires a subscription.

(In fact, unless I’m mistaken, the first chapter–which includes the key facts–is free online; the key facts were in my freely-available American Libraries excerpt; and the spreadsheet used for the report is freely available. But never mind.)

And here I am plugging away on a much broader report…which, to date, I can only be sure four people will ever see. Because, you know, I’m going to charge for it. Not enough to make, say, minimum wage for the time involved, but I’m going to charge for it. And no, it’s not ironic. (Somebody’s paying for pretty much every OA journal, by the way…)

It does get tiresome at times.

The Open Access Landscape: 27. Sociology

Posted in open access on August 28th, 2015

Sociology
includes a range of social sciences that didn’t fit elsewhere, including social sciences and gender studies, among others. The group includes 234 journals, which published 7,227 articles in 2013 and 7,886 articles in 2014.

Grades

Grade Journals %J Articles %A A/J
A

153

65%

5,390

75%

35

Free

137

90%

3,910

73%

29

Pay

16

10%

1,480

27%

93

A$ pay

5

2%

372

5%

74

B

20

9%

899

12%

45

Free

12

60%

325

36%

27

Pay

8

40%

574

64%

72

C

2

1%

164

2%

82

Free

1

50%

24

15%

24

Unk

1

50%

140

85%

140

D

54

23%

402

6%

7

Free

45

83%

306

76%

7

Pay

8

15%

96

24%

12

Unk

1

2%

0%

0

Table 27.1. Sociology journals and articles by grade

Table 26.1 shows the number of journals and 2013 articles for each grade; free, pay and unknown subsets (there are no C-grade APC-charging journals); and average articles per journal. Boldface percentages are of the whole group; others are of the grade above.

As is typical of most areas, APC-charging journals tend to publish a lot more articles than free journals.

Quite a few journals fall into the D group, including these subgroups: C (probably ceased), 13 journals with three articles; D (dying), three journals with five articles; E (erratic), nine journals with 94 articles; H (hiatus?), nine journals with 223 articles; S (small), 20 journals with 77 articles.

Article Volume (including all of 2014)

2014 2013 2012 2011
Journals

204

215

217

198

%Free

83%

83%

85%

86%

Articles

7,886

7,227

6,423

4,891

%Free

54%

63%

66%

74%

Table 27.2. Sociology journals and articles by date

Table 27.2 shows the number of free and APC-charging journals that actually published articles each year, including all of 2014; how many articles those journals published; and what percentage was free. The two journals that probably have APCs but don’t provide them (“unknown”) are omitted—and, additionally, quite a few sociology journals don’t publish articles in any given year.

The percentage of free journals is slightly low for HSS and declining slightly; the percentage of articles in free journals has declined rapidly and is now very low for HSS, although still over half.

OA activity in this area is clearly increasing at a reasonably good rate, although less rapidly than the jump from 2011 to 2012. Looked at on a journal-by-journal basis, 99 journals published more articles in 2014 than in 2013; 28 published the same number (including 13 that didn’t publish articles in either year; 107 published fewer articles in 2014. For significant changes, 87 journals (37%) published at least 10% more articles in 2014; 51 (22%) published roughly the same number; and 96 (41%) published at least 10% fewer articles, including 19 journals that had 2013 articles but no 2014 articles so far.

Journals No-Fee % Articles No-Fee %
Large

8

25%

2,098

33%

Medium

21

67%

1,664

64%

Small

92

86%

2,455

82%

Sparse

93

90%

870

90%

Table 27.3. Sociology journals by peak article volume

Table 27.3 shows the number of journals in each size category (based on the largest year 2011-2013), 2013 articles for journals in the group, and what percentage doesn’t involve APCs. There are no prolific sociology journals—actually, one journal exceeded the 1,000-article threshold in 2014—and very few large journals. As usual, the percentage of free journals and articles declines as the journal size increases.

Fees (APCs)

APC Jour. %Fee %All Art. %Fee %All
High

1

3%

0%

39

2%

1%

Medium

9

24%

4%

423

17%

6%

Low

11

30%

5%

572

23%

8%

Nominal

16

43%

7%

1,488

59%

21%

None

195

84%

4,565

64%

Table 27.4 Sociology journals and articles by fee range

Table 27.4 shows the number of journals in each fee range and 2013 articles for those journals. For the full study group, the APC ranges were determined by quartiles—that is, the first %Fee column would have 25% in each cell. Clearly, these journals deviate hugely from that, with only one high-priced journal and nearly half of them in the nominal category. Atypically, journals with nominal APCs publish the bulk of the articles involving APCs, with the priciest journals publishing relatively few articles.

Given the numbers, it’s not surprising that there’s a negative correlation between APC and either peak or 2013 volume, but they’re too weak (-0.17 to -0.20) to be significant.

Starting Dates and the Gold Rush

Year Total Free%
1980-89

2

100%

1990-91

3

100%

1992-93

4

100%

1994-95

4

100%

1996-97

8

88%

1998-99

11

91%

2000-01

19

95%

2002-03

15

87%

2004-05

26

88%

2006-07

27

93%

2008-09

26

88%

2010-11

58

74%

2012-13

31

65%

Table 27.5. Starting dates for sociology OA journals

Table 27.5 shows sociology OA journals by starting date and the percentage of journals started in each period that don’t currently charge APCs. There are no very old sociology OA journals, and there’s very little sense of the gold rush—that is, a rapid increase in APC-charging journals from 2006 through 2011. Sociology OA journals picked up in general starting in 2004 and beyond, but the percentage of APC-charging journals has only increased since 2010. If there’s a gold rush, it’s recent, starting in 2010 and continuing since then.

Figure 27.1 shows essentially the same information as Table 27.5 in graphic form (omitting unknown journals).

Figure 27.1. Sociology journals by starting date

Year Journals Articles Art/Jrnl
1980-89

2

78

39

1990-91

3

199

66

1992-93

4

191

48

1994-95

4

57

14

1996-97

7

373

53

1998-99

10

257

26

2000-01

18

464

26

2002-03

15

299

20

2004-05

22

1,480

67

2006-07

24

571

24

2008-09

24

480

20

2010-11

53

1,909

36

2012-13

29

869

30

Table 27.6. Sociology articles per journal by starting date

Table 27.6 shows journals that published articles in 2013, how many articles they published and average 2013 articles per journal. There are two distinctly high articles-per-journal averages: the three journals from 1990-91 and the 22 from 2004-05.

In all, OA journals in sociology and related fields tend to have a higher percentage of articles involving APCs than most humanities and social sciences, but the fees are mostly very low.

Definitions and notes

See The Open Access Landscape: 1. Background for definitions and notes

If you’re interested in a book-form version of this material (with an additional bonus graph and probably some additional analysis added in each chapter), let me know, either in a comment or by email to waltcrawford at gmail dot com. If you’d like to see this research continued, please contribute to Cites & Insights.

Did any other radio station do a signature song this good?

Posted in Stuff on August 26th, 2015

Back in the ’50s and ’60s. one of the best radio stations was KSFO–good talent, good music. And a *great* signature song, The Sound of the City. You couldn’t call it a jingle: it’s more than a minute long and anything but a jingle.

I was fortunate enough to get a copy from a radio columnist. I now see that YouTube has a version that’s not quite as high quality (just a little distorted and bass-heavy), but pretty close:

So, my question is: Did any other radio station, anywhere, any time, do anything this classy? And if they did, could you point it out?

Or just, you know, enjoy The Sound of the City.

The Open Access Landscape: 26. Religion

Posted in open access on August 21st, 2015

Religion
includes journals on specific religions (and religious figures) and aspects of religion or non-religion. While these journals could plausibly be grouped with philosophy, they’re quite different, as we’ll see. The group includes 65 journals that published 1,603 articles in 2013 and 1,811 articles in 2014.

Grades

Grade Journals %J Articles %A A/J
A

41

63%

1,112

69%

27

Free

37

90%

660

59%

18

Pay

4

10%

452

41%

113

B

4

6%

241

15%

60

Free

2

50%

26

11%

13

Pay

2

50%

215

89%

108

C

1

2%

141

9%

141

Pay

1

100%

141

100%

141

D

19

29%

109

7%

6

Free

18

95%

66

61%

4

Pay

1

5%

43

39%

43

Table 26.1. Religion journals and articles by grade

Table 26.1 shows the number of journals and 2013 articles for each grade; free and pay numbers (there are no unknowns); and average articles per journal. Boldface percentages are percentages of the whole set; others are percentages of the grade above. There are no A$ journals (none that charge $1,000 or more APC.)

These are fairly startling numbers—specifically, the articles per journal and resulting percentage differences between journals (where, as is usual for the humanities and social sciences, free journals dominate) and articles (where the percentage of articles in free journals is very low for HSS). Pay-journals average at least five times as many articles as free journals.

The percentage of D journals is unusually high and includes these subgroups: C (probably ceased), three journals with no 2013 articles; E (erratic), two journals with 49 articles; H (hiatus?), one journal with 13 articles; S (small), 13 journals with 47 articles.

Article Volume (including all of 2014)

2014 2013 2012 2011
Journals

58

61

63

60

%Free

86%

87%

87%

90%

Articles

1,811

1,603

1,555

1,493

%Free

49%

47%

53%

51%

Table 26.2. Religion journals and articles by date

Table 26.2 shows the number of journals that actually published articles in each year, how many articles they published (including all of 2014), and what percentage was free.

The percentage of free journals is fairly typical for humanities and social sciences and declined a bit over the four years—but the percentage of articles in those journals is extremely low for HSS, although it hasn’t changed all that much (or in any regular fashion).

OA activity in religion seems to be increasing at a reasonable rate.

Looking at individual journals, 27 published more articles in 2014 than in 2013; 13 published the same number (including three with no articles in either year); 25 published fewer articles in 2014. In terms of significant changes, 23 (35%) published at least 10% more articles in 2014, and exactly the same number—21 or 32%–stayed about the same or declined by at least 10%, including five journals that published articles in 2013 but have no 2014 articles as of early May 2015.

Journals No-Fee % Articles No-Fee %
Large

1

0%

355

0%

Medium

4

0%

401

0%

Small

21

86%

524

82%

Sparse

39

100%

323

100%

Table 26.3. Religion journals by peak article volume

Table 26.3 shows the number of journals in each size category (there are no prolific journals in this area, and in fact none with more than 400 articles per year), 2013 articles for journals in that group, and the no-fee percentages. Once again, this is a field of extreme: mostly sparse journals, none of them charging APCs, with a handful of medium and large journals—all of them charging APCs.

Fees (APCs)

APC Jour. %Fee %All Art. %Fee %All
Medium

2

25%

3%

239

28%

15%

Low

3

38%

5%

205

24%

13%

Nominal

3

38%

5%

407

48%

25%

None

57

88%

752

47%

Table 26.4. Religion journals and articles by fee range

Table 26.4 shows the number of journals in each fee range and the number of 2013 articles for those journals. Just as there are no prolific journals in religion, there are no high-priced journals: no journal hits or exceeds the $800 mark.

There are so few APC-charging journals that notes comparing the distribution of charges to the 25% per row that holds for the broader study are irrelevant. It is interesting that nominal-fee journals actually publish more articles per journal than low-priced journals.

Starting Dates and the Gold Rush

Year Total Free%
Pre-1960

1

100%

1960-69

1

0%

1970-79

2

50%

1980-89

2

0%

1992-93

1

100%

1994-95

2

100%

1996-97

7

100%

1998-99

5

80%

2000-01

3

100%

2002-03

8

100%

2004-05

5

100%

2006-07

7

100%

2008-09

5

80%

2010-11

13

92%

2012-13

3

67%

Table 26.5. Starting dates for religion OA journals

Table 26.5 shows religion OA journals by starting date, including the percentage of journals in each period that currently don’t charge APCs. There is no apparent gold rush (that is, a surge of APC-charging journals from 2006 through 2011). Note that no journals began in 1990-91.

Figure 26.1 shows essentially the same information in graph form. Note that there’s only one period—the 1980s—with more than one new APC-charging journal.

Figure 26.1. Religion journals by starting date

Year Journals Articles Art/Jrnl
1960-69

1

117

117

1970-79

2

56

28

1980-89

2

239

120

1992-93

1

6

6

1994-95

2

27

14

1996-97

7

67

10

1998-99

5

407

81

2000-01

3

21

7

2002-03

8

199

25

2004-05

5

45

9

2006-07

6

58

10

2008-09

3

48

16

2010-11

13

274

21

2012-13

3

39

13

Table 26.6. Articles per religion journal by starting date

Table 26.6 shows journals that published articles in 2013, when they started, and the average articles per journal. There are all sorts of anomalies, but given the small numbers of journals involved, they may not be worth discussing. (When the study through 2013 was done in late 2014, the single pre-1960 journal had not published any 2013 articles.)

Overall, it’s an odd group, with most articles involving fees—very unusual for the humanities and social sciences—but non-APC journals predominating.

Definitions and notes

See The Open Access Landscape: 1. Background for definitions and notes

If you’re interested in a book-form version of this material (with an additional bonus graph and probably some additional analysis added in each chapter), let me know, either in a comment or by email to waltcrawford at gmail dot com. If you’d like to see this research continued, please contribute to Cites & Insights.

One quick serious question re journals with possible malware

Posted in open access on August 20th, 2015

I’ve completed the derivative spreadsheet columns (that is, data derived from or based on other data in the spreadsheet) and prepared the outline, so now I’m gearing up to (that is, procrastinating on) writing the actual book/C&I issue, a long but rewarding process. And this question is serious:

I encountered 65 gold OA journals (in DOAJ) that either McAfee Side Adviser or Malwarebytes or Office 2013 flagged as being or containing possible or probable malware. Since I was actually infected by a nasty virus last year that was present on at least three different journal sites, I consistently flagged these journals as “XM”–excluded as malware–and did not attempt to analyze them. (Unless somebody wants to give me a Chromebook, there’s no way I’m going to ignore malware warnings…)

In general, I don’t name names in this project–neither journal names nor publishers. That’s not what it’s about.

But in this case I’m sorely attempted to make an exception: These 65 journals have sites managed so badly that they’re flagged as being or containing malware or phishing attempts. I think that’s pretty much unforgivable.

The question:

Should I name these journals in the book/Cites & Insights issue, now tentatively titled The Gold OA Landscape 2011-2014?

Comments welcome here or directly to me, waltcrawford@gmail.com. I’ll need to decide by mid-September.

OA journals: Definitions and motivations

Posted in open access on August 20th, 2015

I feel the need to say a little more about the last portion of this post (the Postscript) and the discussion here that engendered it. I’m saying it here rather than adding to the already extended series of comments (99 at last count!) at that post for various reasons.

First, I’ll repeat my request (which so far has no takers, and I guess it wasn’t precisely phrased as a question):

If you believe that “OA journals” includes “all journals that could conceivably include OA articles,”… If you think that definition of “OA journals” is either correct or common, let me know

Because that’s what David Crotty effectively did in the comment stream: redefine “OA journals” to include all hybrid journals (whether they’ve ever published OA articles or not).

Later, he claims he’s not trying to discredit my work (as does Rick Anderson). I don’t buy it (from Crotty–I do from Anderson), based on these additional Crotty comments:

When a researcher states that they can’t afford to pay APCs, the frequent response is that the majority of OA journals don’t charge APCs. To the researcher, who looks around at their publishing options and sees the majority of journals on the market charging for OA, that’s a confusing statement. To me it suggests cherrypicking, deliberately limiting an analysis to give a desired outcome, rather than accurately stating what’s there.

He’s now calling my work “cherrypicking” and claims I’m deliberately limiting the analysis. And, later:

Regardless, the total number of articles published with an APC in pure Gold OA journals is already higher than that published in purely OA journals that don’t charge an APC, so any hybrid articles, no matter the total number, just adds to that dominance of the APC model. And when one looks on a journal level, including hybrid options would flip the homily that most journals offering OA don’t charge for it.

Cherrypicking, “dominance of the APC model” and “flip the homily.”  Not trying to discredit my work? Riiiigghhht…

The “homily” that “most journals offering OA don’t charge for it” is one I’ve actually never seen, except in shorthand or badly worded statement. The factual assertion is that most OA journals don’t charge APCs–“most” as in about 70% of apparently reputable DOAJ-listed journals in 2014, including thousands from the global south where APCs are the distinct exception to the rule.

But, of course, if you redefine “OA journals” to include all scholarly journals that will make specific articles possibly-OA if they’re paid an outrageous sum (according to Wellcome Trust, hybrid APCs averaged 64% more than OA-journal APCs), then the game’s up: there are more journals that will publish an article with some form of OA for a fee than there are that will do so for nothing.

So, again, if “OA journals” includes hybrids–whether or not they’ve ever published OA articles, and consider that (AFAICT) every Elsevier journal offers an OA option–then I want to know that. I’ll shut up and go away.

Otherwise, there’s a somewhat valid question: to what extent does focusing on OA journals (gold OA journals, that is, and specifically ones in DOAJ) distort the overall picture of the OA market?

The first answer is clear: It’s not knowable.

But I can poke at the edges in a couple of places:

  • The 2015 version of Outsell’s OA report–which focuses entirely on revenue possibilities and says essentially nothing about actual numbers of articles–claims $290.4 million total APC revenue for 2014. (No link because I’m relying on a PDF saved when somebody made the 2015 report available; I have no bookmark for the original source, if it’s still up.) My study yielded $308 million assuming no waivers or discounts, but also excluding hybrids. A generous figure for waivers and discounts appears to be 15%. If you subtract 15% from my figure you get $262 million, which would allow for a little over $28 million for hybrid journals. At $3,000 average APC (actually lower than Wellcome’s figure, and it seems clear that most hybrid APCs are very high), that’s enough for around 9,300 articles–or about 3.3% of the APC-charged articles I counted in actual OA journals. Yes, it increases the size of the universe-but not by much.
  • Wellcome’s own report for 2013-2014 shows about three times as many articles paid for in hybrid journals as in OA journals–and there were about 2,500 articles in hybrid journals. If we assumed that Wellcome’s experience was typical of all OA publishing-an absolutely outrageous assumption!–that would mean that something like 1.5 million OA articles were published in hybrid journals in 2014, in addition to the roughly 300,000 articles in APC-charging journals and  207,000 articles in OA journals that don’t charge APCs. Wow! Two million OA articles: Clearly, OA publishing already dominates peer-reviewed scholarship! (Yes, this is bullshit. It’s projection based on an absurdly small and specialized sample–somewhat like assertions about the average overall APC based on the same tiny set of Wellcome figures.)

The first bullet might have some remote relationship to the actual world. The second is obvious bullshit.

OK, enough of this. I need to refine the book’s outline and get started on the actual processing and writing. (I added my comment because the figures involved are so easy to generate: one derived column–APC times 2014 article count–and a pivot table. The rest is a little more difficult. It helps, of course, to have that master spreadsheet, the result of hundreds of hours of unpaid work. By the way, it sure would help to have some financial support for all this…)

 

72% and 41%: A Gold OA 2011-2014 preview

Posted in open access on August 19th, 2015

I’ve just finished the data gathering and regathering and rechecking for the Gold OA 2011-2014 project, and am procrastinating before starting the analysis and writing to offer a couple of Big Numbers, numbers that can be compared to those on page 32 of the June 2015 American Libraries. Those numbers, for a large subset of DOAJ-listed journals (but omitting a couple of thousand lacking English interfaces) and for calendar 2013, were that just over 6,490 journals published just over 366,000 articles, that 67% of the journals didn’t charge author-side fees (APCs) but that 64% of articles were in APC-charging journals, and that the average cost per article for articles published in APC-charging journals (assuming no waivers, and weighted by the articles published in each journal) was $1,045, or an average of $630 per article including articles in free journals.

That was then. This is now: with a much larger subset of DOAJ (9,824: more than half again as many) that I could fully analyze, and with a much larger group of articles (more than 505,000, up from the 400,000 for 2014 for the 6,490-journal subset). This really is essentially all of DOAJ: there were only 20 cases were I couldn’t analyze a journal because Google’s translation wasn’t good enough; the other missing journals are missing for a variety of reasons, including not being reachable.

And here are the key figures: among those 9,824 journals, in 2014, 71.7% (call it 72%) did not charge APCs but 59.1% of the articles (down from 64%) were in journals that did charge APCs. The average APC per article for articles published in APC-charging journals was up slightly, to $1,086; that yields an overall average that’s actually down slightly at $609. (Part of the slight increase may be a shift from 2013 to 2014; part may be due to including more than three thousand additional journals.)

BUT: After looking at the figures and journals, I believe most of my analysis and the book will focus on those journals that don’t raise major questions (one frequent question: Why is the APC for this journal hidden?) That is, the book will largely ignore the very few “C” journals (around 300) and focus on “A” and “B” (there aren’t many “B” either).

That group of journals includes 9,512 journals that published 482,361 articles in 2014, with a potential total APC revenue of around $305 million. 74% of the journals did not charge APCs in 2014, and those journals published 43% of the articles (that is, 57% were in fee-charging journals). The weighted average cost per article in APC-charging journals was $1,107; the average cost for all articles was $633.

Added 8/22/15: It’s always the case that some journals don’t actually publish articles in any given year. Reducing the A&B figures to journals that actually published articles in 2014, of which there were 8,760, the free journal percentage goes down almost imperceptibly, from 74% to 73%. The percentage of articles in no-fee journals is the same, of course: 43%. (It was 55% in 2011.)

If you think this research and reporting is worthwhile, please contribute (and get a free full copy):

I don’t know when the full study will be out (writing this post doesn’t help matters!); I do know that you have just a few more days (until September 1, 2015) to get a PDF ebook version of the full report with live links for table of contents and table of tables and figures, by contributing at least $50 to Cites & Insights (Paypal button on the home page). Such contributions will help encourage further research.

In any case: I’ll argue that, for 2014, the key figures are: 74% (or 73%) or 71% of journals free; 57% or 59% of articles in fee-charging journals; $1,107 or $1,086 average APC per article appearing in APC-charging journals, $633 of $609 overall..

Yes, of course there are caveats, all of which will be stated clearly in the full report.

 

The Open Access Landscape: 25. Psychology

Posted in open access on August 14th, 2015

Psychology includes those journals clearly dealing with aspects of psychology and a few borderline cases. The 74 journals published 2,926 articles in 2013 and 3,428 articles in 2014.

Grades

Grade Journals %J Articles %A A/J
A

50

68%

1,574

54%

31

Free

45

90%

1,406

89%

31

Pay

5

10%

168

11%

34

A$ pay

2

3%

1,062

36%

531

B

3

4%

82

3%

27

Free

1

33%

58

71%

58

Pay

2

67%

24

29%

12

C

4

5%

125

4%

31

Pay

1

25%

10

8%

10

Unk

3

75%

115

92%

38

D

15

20%

83

3%

6

Free

10

67%

68

82%

7

Pay

5

33%

15

18%

3

Table 25.1. Psychology journals and articles by grade

Table 25.1 shows the number of journals and 2013 articles for each grade; free, pay and unknown numbers; and average articles per journal. Boldface percentages are of the full set; others are of the grade above. A$ journals are always pay, and this group doesn’t have any free C-grade journals or unknown D-grade. There isn’t the usual case of Pay journals at each grade having considerably higher articles per journal than Free journals, but there’s the huge effect of the two A$ journals—which is really one journal with more than 1,000 articles in 2013 (the other has very few). That single journal is also responsible for nearly all the growth in psychology OA from 2013 to 2014.

D journals include these subgroups: C (probably ceased), one journal with no articles; D (dying?), two journals with 13 articles; E (erratic), four journals with 29 articles; N (new), one journal with no 2013 articles; S (small), seven journals with 31 articles.

Article Volume (including all of 2014)

2014 2013 2012 2011
Journals

67

68

67

63

%Free

78%

81%

79%

81%

Articles

3,311

2,811

2,208

1,832

%Free

48%

55%

63%

67%

Table 25.2. Psychology journals and articles by date

Table 25.2 shows the number of free and APC-charging journals (omitting the three journals with unknown APCs) that published articles each year, including all of 2014; how many articles those journals published; and what percentage was free. Journal numbers don’t add up to 71 (that is, 74 minus three unknowns) because there are always journals that don’t publish articles in any given year.

The percentage of no-fee journals is a little low for the humanities and social sciences but still averages eight of ten journals—but the percentage of articles in those free journals, which was just below average for humanities and social sciences in 2011, has dropped sharply to a level that’s nearly as low as biomed.

OA activity in psychology is clearly increasing, at a reasonable clip, but that’s largely due to one journal. On a journal-by-journal basis, it’s a darker picture: 29 journals published more articles in 2014 than in 2013, five published the same number (never zero), and 40 published fewer. Looking at significant changes, 24 journals (32%) published at least 10% more articles in 2014 than in 2013; 17 (23%) stayed about the same; and 33 (45%) published at least 10% fewer articles in 2014.

Journals No-Fee % Articles No-Fee %
Prolific

1

0%

1,033

0%

Medium

8

75%

671

76%

Small

30

87%

927

87%

Sparse

35

69%

295

74%

Table 25.3. Psychology journals and articles by peak article volume

Table 25.3 shows the number of journals in each size bracket that had any journals; 2013 articles for journals in that group; and the no-fee percentages. Psychology is unusual: there are no large journals but there’s one prolific journal, and in all three of the smaller categories, no-fee percentages of journals and articles are nearly the same.

Fees (APCs)

APC Jour. %Fee %All Art. %Fee %All
High

2

13%

3%

1,062

83%

38%

Medium

4

27%

6%

25

2%

1%

Low

5

33%

7%

68

5%

2%

Nominal

4

27%

6%

124

10%

4%

None

56

79%

1,532

55%

Table 25.4. Psychology journals and articles by fee range

Table 25.4 shows the number of journals in each fee range and 2013 articles for those journals. The first %Fee column would show 25% for the complete study, so relatively fewer psychology journals have high APCs (but those journals publish nearly all of the non-free-journal articles) and relatively more low-fee journals.

As to correlation between APC charged and volume of articles in 2013, it’s tricky: there’s a strong correlation (0.62), but only because the largest journal by far—publishing roughly five times as many articles as all other APC-charging journals combined—also has the highest APC (the only one above $2,000). Remove that journal, and the correlation is -0.26: a negative correlation (suggesting that lower APCs correlate with higher volume) but too low to be significant.

Starting Dates and the Gold Rush

Year Total Free%
1970-79

1

100%

1980-89

1

0%

1990-91

1

100%

1992-93

3

100%

1994-95

0

1996-97

6

83%

1998-99

1

100%

2000-01

5

60%

2002-03

10

90%

2004-05

8

100%

2006-07

7

71%

2008-09

12

92%

2010-11

11

55%

2012-13

8

38%

Table 25.5. Starting dates for psychology OA journals

Table 25.5 shows psychology OA journals by starting date and the percentage of journals started in each date range that currently don’t charge APCs. For DOAJ as a whole, there’s a sense of a gold rush of new APC-charging journals from 2006 through 2011, but that’s not really evident here, given that only one journal started in 2008-09 charges fees but most of those started in 2012-13 do.

Figure 25.1 shows essentially the same information as Table 25.5 (omitting unknowns) but as a graph.

Figure 25.1. Psychology OA journals by starting date

Year Journals Articles Art/Jrnl
1970-79

1

6

6

1980-89

1

73

73

1990-91

1

115

115

1992-93

3

87

29

1996-97

6

239

40

1998-99

1

26

26

2000-01

4

159

40

2002-03

9

320

36

2004-05

8

135

17

2006-07

7

117

17

2008-09

12

327

27

2010-11

10

1,178

118

2012-13

8

144

18

Table 26.6. Articles per psychology journal by starting date

Table 26.6 shows journals that published articles in 2013, when they started, and average 2013 articles per journal. Given that the hot spots are the 1980s, 1990-91 and 2010-2011, I think it’s fair to say there are no real patterns here.

Overall, these journals look like social sciences as far as journals are concerned but more like medicine in that articles tend to be published in APC-charging journals—and expensive ones at that.

Definitions and notes

See The Open Access Landscape: 1. Background for definitions and notes

If you’re interested in a book-form version of this material (with an additional bonus graph and probably some additional analysis added in each chapter), let me know, either in a comment or by email to waltcrawford at gmail dot com. If you’d like to see this research continued, please contribute to Cites & Insights.

August-September Cites & Insights (15:8) available

Posted in Cites & Insights on August 13th, 2015

More than half a million articles appeared in Gold OA journals (in DOAJ) in 2014–in more than 9,700 such journals. (The 400,000 mark was actually reached in 2012.) That initial finding is at the heart of the lead essay in a unique issue of Cites & Insights, available in two different versions:

Cites & Insights 15:8 (August-September 2015), the “standard” version (two-column, print-oriented), is 26 pages long and available at http://citesandinsights.info/civ15i8.pdf

The two-column version, designed for online or tablet reading, is 51 pages and available at http://citesandinsights.info/civ15i8on.pdf

What’s unique is that the two versions are textually different.

Both versions begin with:

The Front: About The [Nearly Complete] OA Landscape 2011-2014 pp. 1-4 (pp. 1-7 in one column version)

This essay expands on a July 26, 2015 post regarding the remainder of my full scan of DOAJ journals and what will happen with that scan–and the deadline to get an “active hyperlink” version of the final report.

The two-column version continues with:

Perspective: A Few Words, Part 2  pp. 4-26

The remainder of my little journey through publications past (omitting self published material including, ahem, Cites & Insights), covering 1995 to the present. I think it’s interesting and a little fun. You might also.

The single-column version continues with:

Perspective: Some Moldy Oldies from C&I  pp. 7-51

Excerpts from the very first issue of Cites & Insights and from three issues that have been downloaded less often than others.

 

The Open Access Landscape: 24. Political Science

Posted in open access on August 7th, 2015

Political Science
includes military and defense topics and most governmental affairs areas. In all, 129 OA journals in this area published 2,402 articles in 2013 and 2,579 in 2014.

Grades

Grade Journals %J Articles %A A/J
A

89

69%

1,928

80%

22

Free

85

96%

1,861

97%

22

Pay

4

4%

67

3%

17

A$ pay

2

2%

23

1%

12

B

6

5%

314

13%

52

Free

3

50%

33

11%

11

Pay

3

50%

281

89%

94

D

32

25%

137

6%

4

Free

30

94%

129

94%

4

Pay

1

3%

1

1%

1

Unk

1

3%

7

5%

7

Table 24.1. Political science journals and articles by grade

Table 24.1 shows the number of journals and 2013 articles for each grade; free, pay and unknown numbers; and average articles per journal. Boldface percentages are of the full group; others are of the grade above.

This group is typical of humanities and social sciences in that the vast majority of journals don’t charge APCs and publish the vast majority of articles. Otherwise, it’s distinctive in several ways: There are no C-grade journals; there are an unusually high percentage of D-grade journals; the two $1,000-and-higher A$ journals published very few articles; in general—with the exception of B-grade journals—APC-charging journals published fewer articles than free journals. (The B-grade situation involves one high-volume journal.)

The sizable D group includes these subgroups: C (probably ceased), eight journals publishing ten articles in 2013; D (dying), three journals, 13 articles; E (erratic), seven journals, 62 articles; S (small), 14 journals, 52 articles.

Article Volume (including all of 2014)

2014 2013 2012 2011
Journals

111

121

122

109

%Free

91%

92%

92%

92%

Articles

2,575

2,395

2,214

1,987

%Free

75%

84%

85%

92%

Table 24.2. Political science journals and articles by date

Table 24.2 shows the number of free and APC-charging journals that actually published articles in each year (including all of 2014), how many articles those journals published and what percentage was free. The “unknown” journal (with its handful of articles) is omitted. In any given year, some journals don’t publish any articles.

The extremely high percentage of free journals hasn’t declined significantly, but the percentage of articles in those journals, while still high, has declined; the sharp decline in 2014 is mostly due to a single journal that more than doubled its article count.

OA activity in political science continues to grow, albeit slowly.

Looking at individual journals, 58 published more articles in 2014 than in 2013; 19 published the same number (including five where that number is zero); 52 published fewer articles in 2014. For significant change, 48 (37%) published at least 10% more articles in 2014; 32 (25%) stayed about the same; 49 (38%) published at least 10% fewer articles in 2014, including an even dozen that published at least one article in 2013 but none so far in 2014 (or, in one or two cases, didn’t report to DOAJ and weren’t directly countable).

Journals No-Fee % Articles No-Fee %
Large

1

0%

210

0%

Medium

3

100%

229

100%

Small

52

94%

1,372

93%

Sparse

73

90%

591

87%

Table 24.3. Political science journals by peak article volume

Table 24.3 shows the number of journals in each size category, 2013 articles for journals in that group, and what percentage is in no-fee journals. There are no prolific political science journals and only one large one, which does charge; none of the medium-sized journals charge APCs. There’s no real pattern in the numbers.

Fees (APCs)

APC Jour. %Fee %All Art. %Fee %All
Medium

2

20%

2%

23

6%

1%

Low

2

20%

2%

16

4%

1%

Nominal

6

60%

5%

333

90%

14%

None

118

92%

2,023

84%

Table 24.4. Political science journals and articles by fee range

Table 24.4 shows the number of journals in each fee range (there are no high-APC political science journals) and the number of 2013 articles for those journals. Given the tiny numbers, there’s no point comparing the breakdown to general patterns—basically, what few APC-charging journals there are mostly charge nominal fees, and the ones that charge higher fees don’t publish much of anything.

Starting Dates and the Gold Rush

Year Total Free%
Pre-1960

1

100%

1960-69

1

100%

1980-89

3

100%

1994-95

3

100%

1996-97

3

100%

1998-99

8

100%

2000-01

5

100%

2002-03

6

83%

2004-05

14

86%

2006-07

23

91%

2008-09

26

92%

2010-11

23

87%

2012-13

13

92%

Table 24.5. Starting dates for political science OA journals

Table 24.5 shows political science OA journals by starting date and the percentage of journals started in a given date range that don’t currently charge APCs. The “and the Gold Rush,” seemingly true for DOAJ as a whole (that is, a sudden rush of APC-charging journals from 2006 through 2011), isn’t significant for this group—although it’s interesting that more than half of the journals, free or not, started during those six years. Note that there were no currently-OA journals started during the 1970s or from 1990 through 1993.

Figure 24.5 shows essentially the same information in graphic form, and does include all dates for consistency.

Figure 24.1. Political science journals by starting date

Year Journals Articles Art/Jrnl
Pre-1960

1

87

87

1960-69

1

7

7

1980-89

3

84

28

1994-95

3

47

16

1996-97

3

59

20

1998-99

8

207

26

2000-01

5

108

22

2002-03

6

100

17

2004-05

13

141

11

2006-07

23

317

14

2008-09

24

362

15

2010-11

19

644

34

2012-13

13

239

18

Table 24.5. Political science articles per journal by starting date

Figure 24.5 shows journals that published articles in 2013, when they started, how many 2013 articles they published and average 2013 articles per journal. Given the small numbers involved elsewhere, the most interesting item is probably that journals started in 2010-2011 averaged somewhat more articles than earlier and later journals—but since the most prolific journal started in 2010, that’s not very meaningful.

Overall, political science OA journals are noteworthy mostly for being primarily free and mostly not having all that many articles.

Definitions and notes

See The Open Access Landscape: 1. Background for definitions and notes

If you’re interested in a book-form version of this material (with an additional bonus graph and probably some additional analysis added in each chapter), let me know, either in a comment or by email to waltcrawford at gmail dot com. If you’d like to see this research continued, please contribute to Cites & Insights.


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