Hybrid Open Access

The Journal of the World Universities Forum is a Hybrid Open Access journal. Hybrid Open Access is a new development, increasingly offered by both university presses and well-known commercial publishers.

Hybrid Open Access means that some articles are available only to subscribers, while others are made available at no charge to anyone searching the web. Authors pay an additional fee for the open access option. They may do this because open access is a requirement of their research funding agency. Or they may do it so that non-subscribers can access their article for free.

Common Ground’s open access charge is $250 per article, a very reasonable price compared to our hybrid open access competitors and purely open access journals that are resourced with an author publication fee. Electronic papers are normally only available through individual or institutional subscriptions or for purchase at $5 per article. However, if you choose to make your paper open access, this means that anyone on the web may download it for free.

There are still considerable benefits for paying subscribers, because they can access all articles in the journal, from both current and past volumes, without any restrictions. But making your paper available at no charge increases its visibility, accessibility, and thus potential readership.

Like to make your paper open access? Contact us.

What is Hybrid Open Access and how does it differ from purely open access journal publishing?

The hybrid model is a mixed revenue model of subscription charges and publication fees. It offers authors of accepted papers the choice to pay a fee in order for their article to be made freely available for viewing and downloading by anyone immediately upon publication. This model also grants readers broad reuse rights to encourage the widespread republication and distribution of open access articles (with the proper citation of the author and publisher).

Typically, purely open access journals are either subsidized by academic institutions learned societies, foundations, or government agencies or they charge a significant front-end fee. These fees may be paid by the author him/herself, but more often they are covered by research grants or an author’s academic institution or employer.

The Hybrid Open Access model allows Common Ground to keep our open access fees low—much lower than our competitors—because it consists of a mixed revenue model of both subscription charges and publication fees

How does Common Ground’s publishing model and Hybrid Open Access option differ from traditional academic publishing models?

Traditional academic journal publishers usually do not charge authors article processing or publishing fees. Instead, they charge academic and research libraries exorbitant subscription fees in exchange for access to their journal content. These fees are then passed on to students, faculty, and unaffiliated researchers through tuition hikes, budget cuts, and paywalls. Thus, while it may be gratis for authors to submit to and publish in these journals, their work is not freely accessible to subscribers, nor is it easily or widely accessible to scholars working at institutions unable to afford the subscription fees.

Common Ground’s more inclusive alternative to this model is twofold. First, we levy a modest charge when an article has undergone peer review and been accepted for publication. Currently this charge is associated with a specific conference, and it entitles authors to much more than just the right to submit their paper for publication consideration. This modest fee supports the livelihoods of Common Ground’s small but dedicated conference, publishing, and software development staff. Second, by charging a small fee on the front end, we are able to offer reasonable subscription charges based on a tiered-pricing model, which means that more institutions are able to subscribe to our journals. Additionally, all of our articles are available for download to non-subscribers for $5 per article. Redistributing the costs associated with publishing and keeping these prices both reasonable and competitive is part of Common Ground’s larger mission to shift the balance of power in publishing to ensure that quality work is published and easily accessed by the largest and most diverse group of students, scholars, and practitioners, whether they are working within well-known and well-endowed universities or producing work within smaller institutions or organizations that have been hitherto barred from full access to many scholarly networks.

The Hybrid Open Access model allows us to go one step further towards maximizing the accessibility of the work we publish. By making your journal article open access, you remove all the barriers of access to your research. However, you are still able to take advantage of the journal’s scholarly profile and record, its visibility in academic indexes, and the vibrant community of scholars who browse the exceptional articles that we feature on our website.

What are the benefits of making your paper open access?

By publishing in the journal, your article is already available to the thousands of scholars who have individual subscriptions or whose institutions subscribe to the journal. However, making your paper open access will allow your work to reach an even wider audience. Researchers who may come across your article in one of the indexes that the journal is listed in will be able to download the full text of the paper. Indeed, anyone on the web will be able to access your entire article, thus broadening the dissemination of your research and increasing the incidence other scholars citing your work.

Where does the open access fee go?

The $250 fee that you pay Common Ground to make your article open access covers the revenue that Common Ground loses as result of offering our content to non-subscribers for free. It also contributes to the overall sustainability of Common Ground and the livelihoods of its staff.