Taylor & Francis: More Open Access for Researchers in Namibia, Botswana, South Africa

In News by Porter Anderson

The South African National Library and Information Consortium strikes its 14th transformative agreement, this one with Taylor & Francis.

In the Namib-Naukluft National Park, Namibia. Image – Getty iStockphoto: Pavel Mora

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

The Agreement Covers Open-Access Processing Charges
In more than 2,100 journals during the three-year life of a new agreement, researchers in Namibia, Botswana, and South Africa are to be supported in publishing open-access, thanks to a deal struck by Taylor & Francis with the South African National Library and Information Consortium. The consortium specifically negotiates collective license agreements with publishers and aggregators for scholarly reading and publishing services on behalf of its members and beneficiaries.

The researchers in this case will also benefit from extended journal access and a new publishing training program, according to media messaging from Taylor & Francis.

This new arrangement is Taylor & Francis’ first in sub-Saharan Africa, the company says, and it “enables corresponding authors at participating institutions to choose open access in all Taylor & Francis and Routledge Open Select (hybrid) journals, including UNISA Press and NISC co-published titles. In addition, researchers choosing to publish in full open-access journals can do so at reduced cost, with their institutions’ support.”

The agreement is intended to cover open-access publishing charges for all eligible articles, helping every researcher maximize the impact of her or his work by choosing open access.

Taylor & Francis is specialized in the humanities and social sciences among its journals, so the agreement is expected to be of particular help to researchers in those fields—traditionally among the most challenging for funding to support open-access publishing.

In addition, the read & publish agreement gives faculty and students at participating institutions access to read more than 1,900 journals in both the humanities and social sciences and in science and technology.

Devasar: ‘Championing Diversity and Equity’

The Taylor & Francis team will deliver an editorial-led program of training and resources for researchers in the region to support better understanding of publishing and best practices in open research.

Ellen Tise

Ellen Tise, chair of the South African National Library and Information Consortium board, is quoted in the announcement—which was released on Friday (March 22)—saying, “This deal has enabled South Africa to repurpose read-only subscription expenditures to finance the right for our authors from participating institutions to publish full and immediate open-access in all Taylor & Francis Open Select (hybrid) journals while retaining their copyright and without paying any fee.

“When added to our 13 other such agreements, more than 80 percent of South African research traditionally published behind a paywall now has the potential to be published fully open-access without additional fees.”

Nitasha Devasar

Nitasha Devasar, vice-president and commercial lead for Taylor and Francis in India, South Asia, and Africa, is also quoted, and she says, “At the heart of this partnership lies a commitment to championing diversity and equity in scholarly communication, particularly amplifying the voices and contributions from the Global South.

“The partnership enables affiliated researchers from South Africa, Botswana, and Namibia to access an extensive range of journals and empowers them to publish their work in an open-access format for global reach, visibility, and impact.”

Pethe Matutu

And Pethe Matutu, CEO for Universities in South Africa (USAf), says, “It’s indeed the most welcome news that the South African National Library and Information Consortium and Taylor & Francis have managed to cinch this three-year agreement.

“USAf regards the agreement as cushioning our universities from the harsh reality of reduced state subsidies that provide a lifeblood to the daily operations of universities including library resources.

“USAf appreciates that the two entities prioritize the advancement of open and high-quality learning in our universities.”

It’s interesting to note that the South African National Library and Information Consortium has transformative agreements with many academic publishers, not just with Taylor & Francis. Those publishers include Elsevier, Wiley, Springer Nature, SAGE Publishing, Emerald, the Royal Society, Oxford University Press Journals, Cambridge University Press, and several others.

You can read more about the consortium’s activities in the area of open access here.

More from Publishing Perspectives on academic and scholarly publishing is here, more on international journal publishing is here, more on Taylor & Francis is here, and more on open access and transformative agreements is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with CNN.com, CNN International, and CNN USA. As an arts critic (Fellow, National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.