The results of OAPEN-UK’s Five-Year OA Monograph study was released in late January, 2016.
Here’s an excerpt from the announcement:
Examining the attitudes and perceptions of funders, researchers, publishers, learned societies, universities and libraries, our study reiterated the deep strength of feeling and connectedness that each group has with the monograph, especially in terms of identity and reputation. It also found that while many think open access is a good idea in principle, there is uncertainty about how easy it would be to implement the necessary policies and systems to support OA monographs.
As major stakeholders in the sustainability of access to scholarly monographs, librarians, especially those from smaller institutions, should take particular interest in this report. With dwindling collections budgets coupled with the perennial increases in cost for monographs, open access is frequently championed as a viable alternative to the increasingly unsustainable model of traditional scholarly publishing. While OA is gaining traction in periodicals publishing (through a combination of Green and Gold models), monograph publishing is an entirely different animal. The OAPEN-UK report highlights some of the major challenges to Open Monograph implementation in the Humanities and Social Sciences. In addition to reporting on attitudes and perceptions of numerous stakeholders, the report details the implication of policies, systems and processes as well as business models for sustained OA Monograph creation and dissemination. The report also highlights the roles stakeholders (including librarians) can play in supporting the future of OA monographs. Through a combination of advocacy, experimentation with alternative collection models, and better understanding how OA can support student needs, academic librarians could aid in laying the groundwork for a more sustainable model for the creation and dissemination of scholarly monographs.