Springer Nature and Projekt DEAL, which represents nearly 700 academic institutions in Germany, have reached an understanding on the world's largest transformative Open Access agreement.
MPDL Services, on behalf of Projekt DEAL, and Springer Nature signed the Memorandum of Understanding today in Berlin with the final contract to be concluded later this year.
The two-part agreement means, for at least two years, authors at Projekt DEAL member institutions will be able to publish OA in both Springer Nature's fully OA journals and Springer Nature's collection of 1,900 hybrid journals and have permanent reading access to content in Springer, Palgrave, Adis, and Macmillan academic journals published during the contract period back to 1997.
The final contract will run from 2020 to 2022 with an option to extend to 2023 and the agreement is expected to see more than 13,000 articles a year from German researchers published OA.
Springer Nature c.e.o. Daniel Ropers said: "It is a real privilege to be working with Projekt DEAL to transform research publishing in Germany. This arrangement has taken three years to finalise which reflects its scale and complexity, but we highly appreciate the leadership the German research institutions have shown, and in partnership we’ve been able to conclude this journey with a ground-breaking solution. The shared belief, commitment and openness of both parties has facilitated an understanding which is sustainable for both partners: for German research, as it enables scientists in Germany, whether from small or large institutes, whether from the physical, natural, applied or social sciences, and whether grant funding has been available or not, to publish OA with us. And for Springer Nature, as it facilitates faster growth, allowing us to benefit from our leading role in the open access migration as a partner to the research community."
For 2020, the Publish and Read (PAR) component of the deal is based on OA publication of at least 9,500 articles and grants participating institutions with permanent reading access to 1,900 journals in the Springer, Palgrave, Adis and Macmillan portfolios. The costs for reading access and OA publishing in the PAR component will be reflected in a per-article PAR fee of €2,750. The PAR element does not include Nature and Nature branded subscription journals or purely professional journals as well as magazines, such as Scientific American or Spektrum der Wissenschaft.
Springer Nature will offer a 20% discount on the list price for OA publishing in BMC and SpringerOpen titles for all institutions; list price increases of article processing charges will not exceed 3.5 % per journal title per year calculated based on the 2020 list price. Springer Nature and Projekt DEAL also aim to close the gaps in access to archive content from all Springer Nature journals covered by the MoU.
Head of Projekt DEAL Professor Dr Horst Hippler added: "We are very pleased to have come to an agreement that meets both core goals of Projekt DEAL: a fair pricing model and a shift towards open access. The long publishing history of Springer Nature is highly respected in the German research community and through this agreement the publisher has shown to be an innovative and open partner ready to deliver the solutions that are best for science and the scholarly endeavour. The emerging contract will thus significantly contribute to making research accessible in an affordable and sustainable manner. I would like to thank the many people involved in the negotiation process and the hundreds of institutions in our scientific community – universities, libraries, research institutions – who endowed Projekt DEAL with their trust and mandate for the negotiations on their behalf."