The International Publishers Association notes the renewed impetus by Coalition S to achieve the European Union’s target of open access to publicly funded research by 2020. The IPA urges the EC to carefully consider the potential international impact of such a shift in Europe and ensure that academics’ freedom to publish is not affected.

Publishers have been providing open access to reliable, peer-reviewed scientific research in a sustainable manner for many years. This process is complex with hybrid Open Access options, Green and Gold Open Access and flexible Article Publication Charge (APC) pricing part of the industry’s attempts to ensure transition while remaining viable.

The desire to shift to open access is understandable, but unintended consequences must be avoided. These could include limiting researchers’ freedom to publish in the publication outlet of their choice, restricting publication possibilities for publishers without access to outside funding, and impacting interoperability. Above all, ensuring adequate funding will be one of the key questions that needs answering if successful transition is to happen. The IPA supports the International Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers in its call for dialogue to ensure the aspirations of this transition are realised.

IPA Secretary General, José Borghino said: The EU’s desire to take the lead on transitioning to Open Access may means that researchers elsewhere are seriously disadvantaged. We encourage the EC to find a better way of delivering their goals by maintaining an open dialogue with STM publishers.

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