OA2020 Mainland China Signatory Libraries Discussed a Response
To Plan S Guidance on Implementation

04 02, 2019

Mainland China signatory libraries of OA2020 Initiative Expression of Interest held a meeting March 26, 2019, at the National Science Library, Chinese Academy of Sciences, in Beijing, to discuss a response to Plan S Guidance on Implementation. The participants represented the following institutions: National Science and Technology Library, National Library of Science (Chinese Academy of Sciences), National Agricultural Library (Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences), Peking University Library, Tsinghua University Library, Fudan University Library, Sichuan University Library, ShanghaiTech University Library, China University of Mining and Technology Library, Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University Library, Southern University of Science and Technology Library, Guangdong Science and Technology Library, Guangxi University of Science and Technology Library, Guangxi University of Chinese Medicine Library, Nanjing Normal University Library. 

Plan S is an initiative for open access by the cOAlition S that requires immediate and complete open access from 2020 of scientific publications resulting from research funded by cOAlition S members. cOAlition S has issued the 10 principles of Plan S and then, for comment, a Guidance for Implementation. The participants understood that the formal feedback deadline has passed but, realizing China has been an active and important partner in theglobal research enterprise and in the global open access movement, it is critical for Chinese research and library communities to get involved and to be heard in development of the future scholarly communications ecosystem.  

The participants listened an analysis of Plan SPrinciples and its Guidance on Implementation and a summary of feedbacks to Plan S Guidance from researchers, universities, libraries, publishers, and learned societies. Based on their own situations and concerns, the participants discussed their responses to Plan S Guidance on Implementation. They expressed their strong support to open access, strong willingness to participate in implementation of open access, and strong willingness to participate in international rule setting of open access and open knowledge ecosystem and in development of related infrastructural tools. They call upon all the related parties to facilitate the implementation of open access and development of related open knowledge infrastructure.  

The followings are the discussed response to Plan S Guidance on Implementation.  

1.We are in broad support of Plan S and its goals to ensure immediate and complete open access to journal articles resulting from publicly funded research to the world. We applaud the effort of Plan Sto provide strong incentives to make research open access. We support an international effort to achieve this goal worldwide as soon as possible.  

2.We fully recognize that the need for forceful and accountable policies by public funders in research, education, and libraries, to facilitate open access against various entrenched interests orthe inertia of the status quo. We urge all in research, education, publishing, platforms, repositories, and libraries to engage diligently in transformative efforts abreast with time to meet the challenges.

3.We support the Final Conference Statement of the 14th Berlin Conference on Open Access with its commitments. We urge all the publishers to work with the global research community to effect complete and immediate open access according to the Statement. 

4.Wesupport the principles and roadmaps of OA2020 Initiative which aims to transform a majority of today’s scholarly journals from subscription to OA publishing, while continues to support new forms of OA publishing. We believe the transition process can be realized within the framework of currently available resources.We see no legitimate reasons for, and will object to, any attempts to increase spending from the original subscribing institutions in the transformation.  

5.We support that authors retain copyrights of their publications in open access publishing through journals or open access platforms.  

6.We support that open access publications are made under open licenses. We support the use ofthe CC_BY license as the preferred one but recommend that other CC licenses also be allowed as compliant to Plan S. 

7.We recognize the strong need forcompliant requirements, agreed by the research communities, for open access journals and platforms. We agree that infrastructural instruments like DOAJ and OpenDOAR can be utilized to help identifying and signaling compliance, but we urge that cOAlition S and other funders recognize and support other appropriate mechanisms for the purpose and require any such instruments are put under international oversight by the global research community to ensure their no-for-profit nature, inclusiveness, objectiveness, integrity, and efficiency. 

8.We commend the recognition by Plan S that there exist different models of financing and paying for Open Access publication. We support an inclusive range of immediate open access publishing approaches. We support the transparency and monitoring of open access publication costs and fees. 

9.We urge that cOAlition S and other funders, through Plan S or other means, provide financial support for no-fee OA journals. The wide range of support approaches tono-fee OA journalsshould be encouragedto enhance the diversity of open access publishing and competiveness of publishing market, and to avoid the perverse effect of giving no-fee journals an incentive to start charging fees. While the support can start with general term statements, measures can be timely designed and tested to encourage quality, integrity, transparency and openness, and increasing host investment and other diverse and appropriate income.  

10.We support that where article processing charges (APCs) apply, efforts are made to establish a fair and reasonable APC level, including equitable waiver policies, that reflects the costs involved in the quality assurance, editing, and publishing process and how that adds value to the publication.We hold it very important that any such effort should take into consideration of the diversity in the world to ensure applicability and affordability of any such measures across countries and disciplines.  

11.We commend the support and requirements of Plan S for financing APCs for open access publication in subscription journals (‘hybrid Open Access’) only under transformative agreements. These agreements should be temporary and transitional, with a shift to full open access within a very few years. 

12.We understand the purposes and the benefits of using ORCIDs in journal publications. Considering different paces of adopting ORCID in different regions and disciplines, we recommend that it is implemented as a preferred condition, at least in the short beginning years. We recommend the same treatment for using DOI.  

13.We support the Plan S recommendation that “all publications and also otherresearch outputs deposited in open repositories.” We recommend that Plan S make full acknowledge and use of the full range of capabilities of open repositories to support open access, long-term preservation, research management, and re-use.  

14.We encourage that Plan S takesthe transformative green OA mechanism as one of venues to implement open access, as long as the embargo period of compliant green OA repositories should be reduced to zero in a short time.  

15.We understand the purposes and the benefits of automaticingest of publications, JATS XML format, Open API to allow others (including machines) to access, QA process to integrate full text with core abstract and indexing services. We support the efforts to work toward adapting to these or equivalent techniques for more efficient processing and better use of open access content. We call on publishers and libraries to strive for this. However, at the beginning, we recommend that these are implemented as preferred measures. Other means of ingest, different machine-readable publication formats, alternative Open APIs or even temporarily lacking of Open APIs, and other means of QA should be allowed as compliant. At the same time common best practice guidelines and infrastructural support should be developed with international consultation to make the best and easy use of these or other equivalent methods or techniques.  

16.We recommend that Plan S add as a requirement that, either by national laws or regulations, or by grant contract requirements, that funded authors retain sufficient and non-exclusive rights to deposit their publications into open repositories.  

17.We commend and support the intention of cOAlition S and other public funders to support mechanisms for establishing Open Access journals, platforms, and infrastructures where necessary in order to provide routes to open access publication in all disciplines. We encourage efforts by funders to increase the innovation and competitiveness of open access publishing and open access infrastructural instruments