Supporting our communities on their open journey

16th February 2021

Shelley Allen

Author: Shelley Allen, Head of Open Research.

Living through a pandemic is a vivid reminder of the value and impact that timely research and data sharing can have at the global scale. Aware of the difference that a fully open research ecosystem can make to progress on health, economic and societal issues, we have committed to an ambitious strategy that places open access and open research more broadly, front and centre for our communities.

Lead by a commitment to co-creation and the needs of our communities, we are forging a path to open and the contribution it can make to real societal impact.

Many stakeholders in the research ecosystem share our ambitions for open research, although agreement on the route to that destination diverges at times. Plan S Rights Retention Strategy (RRS) is an example of where our plans with respect to open access diverge from those of a number of funders, and we recently joined many scholarly publishers by highlighting these in an open letter.

An open strategy that supports impact

Emerald is wholeheartedly committed to open research and continues to invest in its development. We are long-standing signatories of initiatives such as the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA) and partner with various organisations to advance openness and drive change. This aligns to our Impact Manifesto – our commitment to supporting meaningful, responsible, real world impact.

We believe in the potential for a research ecosystem that promotes open access and open research, inspiring open participation in an equitable setting. Our commitment to open research is in this broader sense and we continue to explore ways to support both access to content, as well as author participation in the research discourse, particularly for those in low and middle-income countries whose voice remains underrepresented.

Our vision for open research

We have a long-term commitment for open research and continue to make considerable investments in support of open access and open participation.

Our open model includes a fully open Emerald Open Research (EOR) platform created in partnership with F1000, a liberal zero embargo green open access policy, a gold open access option for all our journals, and an open access option to publish monographs, particularly relevant to our Social Sciences and Humanities communities. In another move, we have partnered with Jisc to support authors by auto-depositing their green open access article, following peer review, in institutional repositories.

Open access content for global issues

Our world is facing unprecedented and complex challenges and progressive publishers are supporting efforts to find answers to these issues. As a founding signatory of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) Publishers Compact, we are committed to take leading action among publishers, and accelerate progress to achieve the SDGs by 2030.

One route to accelerate progress on the SDGs is making research more accessible. We have created six gateways on EOR to publish research assets, including data sets and other content, aligned to the SDGs. The gateways move beyond traditional disciplines, instead focusing on critical societal issues: Sustainable Food Systems, Healthy Lives, Responsible Management, Sustainable Cities, Education and Learning, and Digital World.

Supporting research in low and middle-income countries

It’s crucial that researchers in countries and regions of the world who lack access to funding and/or publishing options have additional help. We support their critical work through initiatives such as our waiver programmes, where we either publish their work open access without charge or with a 50% discount on the article processing charge (APC).

Our fully open access options include those on EOR, the International Journal of Climate Change Strategies and Management, and Journal of Mental Illness.

The future is open

In collaboration with our communities, we will continue to move towards a fully open research model that serves their needs and is equitable and sustainable for the long run.

We thank our communities for their partnership and embrace the journey ahead to develop an open offering that serves both their needs and those that count on its success.