Re: Australian Public Funding of Journals

From: Brian Lynch <blynch_at_stfx.ca>
Date: Sun, 18 Sep 2005 18:25:37 -0300

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Dear Jean-Claude:

Herewith some more input on the 15 journals of science published
by National Research Council Research Press [NRCRP]:
If one converses with the senior personnel of NRCRP they will tell
you that the mandate of the journals is to operate in full cost-recovery
mode
[I interpret this to mean without subsidy] and then say that only 2 of 15
recover their costs fully.
I hesitate to ask whether NRCRP pays a rental fee for their space
in the rather grandiose buildings occupied by CISTI
¬ [Canada Institute for Scientific & Technological Information] in
Ottawa.
They do charge a fee of $20 per [electronic] article retrieved from non-
Canadian sources.
I have no idea of the circulation of hard-copy issues of the journals,
but the subscription costs are around $1,000 for a volume of the
Canadian Journal of Chemistry [electronic or paper; $1,300 for both].
So-called "free electronic access" to some Canadian IPs is subsidized by
another
division of CISTI.
CRKN [Canadian Research Knowledge Network] [a multiuniversity consortium]
pays for complete access [current + archives] for all publications of the
American Chemical Society
and the Royal Society of Chemistry, but NOT the Canadian Journal of
Chemistry.

This probably makes the thread of discussion more complicated still!

Brian Lynch

 Jean-Claude Guédon wrote:

 Many thanks for your input on the Australian situation.

Subsidies to scholarly publications are generally not viewed as market
distortions in many parts of the world, but rather as part of support to
the research process; however, things may be a little different in
Australia.

This said, it appears that the Australian Academy for the Humanities
does support some publishing with direct financial grants:

I quote :

One of the aims of the Australian Academy of the Humanities (AAH) is to
advance knowledge of the Humanities by encouraging and supporting
scholarship, and the pursuit of excellence, in the broad-ranging fields
of the Humanities.

In accordance with this aim, the AAH includes in its activities the
Publication Subsidy Scheme to provide modest financial support for the
publication of scholarly works of high quality in the Humanities.

http://www.humanities.org.au/Grants/PubSubs/PubSubs.htm

I forward this information to the Open Access Forum. If anyone in
Australia has more information about this, please let me know.

Best,

Jean-Claude Guédon

Le dimanche 18 septembre 2005 à 09:56 +1000, Arthur Sale a écrit :
  

 In Australia, as far as I know, exactly *no* scholarly journal is explicitly
supported by the Australian Government. We just don't do that sort of market
distortion. Journals survive on their value to subscribers.

I exclude of course indirect funding via subscriptions to Australian
journals by Australian university libraries, and free services provided by
Australian editors, associate editors and referees whose salaries are paid
by universities or research institutions, which are unknowable. There may be
a few journals which are operated by public funded agencies as part of their
mission (I doubt it), but 'support' for these will certainly not go as high
as a conscious public funding decision.

I suspect the same is true of the whole South Pacific and SE Asian region.

Arthur Sale
Professor of Computing Research
    
Received on Sun Sep 18 2005 - 22:38:34 BST

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