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Author Choice Open Access at ECS

The Electrochemical Society is offering authors the choice of publishing their research as Open Access (OA) and many are able to do so for FREE!

To help authors publish their work as Open Access, ECS is giving Article Credits to authors who are: ECS members, have attended an ECS meeting, or are from an institution that subscribes to ECS publications. If you fit into one of those categories, it means you do not have to pay an Article Processing Charge – normally $800.

OA articles are clearly marked at the table of contents and abstract levels, along with the usage license associated that article.

Have a look at our FAQs (below) and get in touch with us if you have any further questions.



Article Processing Charges (APCs) and Article Credits

Open Access and Copyright

General FAQs
Why is ECS deciding to move toward Open Access?
Why not go fully Open Access right away?
How will people know if an article is freely available or not?
Does ECS have a Green OA policy for its journals?

Author FAQs
Why would I choose to make my article OA?
Does making my article OA change the peer-review or publication process in any way?
Why do I have to pay?
How do I know if I can use Article Credits from my institution?
How do I use Article Credits if I am an ECS member?
How do I submit an article to ECS that I would like to have published as OA?
How and when do I pay?

Subscriber FAQs
Why are you levying Article Processing Charges while still keeping subscriptions? Are you
“double-dipping”?

Any more questions? Please contact us on oa@electrochem.org.


Article Processing Charges (APCs) and Article Credits

If an author wishes to publish an article as immediate Open Access, our Article Processing Charge is USD $800 per accepted article, or an Article Credit may be used in place of payment.

Authors belonging to an institution that subscribes to ECS publications are entitled to unlimited Article Credits in place of Article Processing Charges. As part of the 2014 and 2015 subscription packages, all authors coming from subscribing institutions may publish their work as Open Access with no further charge to authors or institutions.

ECS members, both individual and institutional, will receive one Article Credit per member (or named member representative) per calendar year, for use in that year. For any subsequent articles that a member wishes to make immediately available as Open Access, ECS is offering a discounted rate for the Article Processing Charge of USD $200.

Attendees of the 225th ECS Meeting in Orlando, Florida (Spring 2014) and the 226th ECS Meeting in Cancun, Mexico (Fall 2014) will also receive one Article Credit (for use for up to 12 months after the meeting) for each meeting they attend.


Open Access and Copyright

In the spirit of allowing maximum access to the outputs of research, in an Open Access environment the standard copyright agreements among authors, their publishers, and the end user do not really apply.

In place of a copyright transfer, authors who wish to make their articles Open Access are asked to sign an exclusive Open Access Publishing Agreement with ECS. Copyright will remain with the author, and the author will need to select a Creative Commons usage license to attach to the work, which will define how the article may be used by the general public.

ECS offers authors a choice of two Creative Commons usage licenses. Some advocates of Open Access believe that CC BY, as the most liberal of the licenses, is the most appropriate license under which to publish Open Access content (see this OASPA article), and in some cases where funding bodies mandate Open Access publishing, they mandate a CC BY license. However, authors may wish to choose the CC BY–NC–ND license instead, which places similar restrictions on usage as the publisher does in the traditional copyright arrangement. It limits use to non-commercial use (—NC), and restricts others from creating derivative works (—ND). More information about the licenses can be found on the Creative Commons website. If you need more help selecting a license, please get in touch with us at oa@electrochem.org.

Once an article is published, the author’s choice of Creative Commons license will be clearly marked at the abstract level, in the full text article, and will be embedded in the metadata. Copyright law does still apply to protect the work. Any breaches of a CC license would normally be seen as copyright infringements.

If the authors choose a CC BY-NC-ND license (non-commercial, no derivatives), ECS’s Open Access Publishing Agreement asks that ECS be granted rights that they have always had in the traditional publishing model: others may not use the work for commercial purposes without getting permission from ECS, but the author grants to ECS the exclusive right to use the work for commercial purposes and to sublicense it to others. Any revenue generated by ECS will help recoup the cost of its Open Access publication activities: currently ECS is not passing on the full costs of publication to the authors and hopes to be able to keep article processing charges at a moderate level. Find out more about the publishing agreement.


General FAQs

Why is ECS deciding to move toward Open Access?

Enabling Open Access (OA) to scientific research is imperative to ECS in our mission to disseminate the best research in our technical fields as widely as possible.

Open Access means that an article is freely available online to anyone who wishes to see it, so the reader neither has to pay for it directly, nor belong to an institution that subscribes to the journal it appears in.

Instead, the costs of publication are paid upfront before publication (usually by funding institutions, employers, or authors, rather than afterwards by readers or their institutions). Open Access is a move toward disseminating the results of important scientific work more widely through removing subscription barriers, and thereby making the outputs of research accessible to anyone with an Internet connection who may need or want to see them. (For those who would like a more comprehensive introduction to OA, Peter Suber’s article is a great place to start.)

Up until the end of 2013, the majority of ECS’s journal publication activities were funded through subscriptions. Moving toward OA requires a change to the way we finance these activities. The challenge for us as a nonprofit society publisher is how to put the best OA business model in place for the future, which allows us to sustain excellence throughout our journals, while enabling Open Access.

Our long-term goal is to move away from the subscriptions model entirely.

We need to fundamentally change the way we finance our work, and while we relish the challenge, we are choosing to tread cautiously to make sure we get it right and can provide a sustainable solution for the future. As a first step, ECS is embarking on its OA journey with a mixed funding model for enabling Open Access, currently including Article Processing Charges and subscriptions.

Author Choice Open Access is now an option within our current subscriptions-based business model. Authors who wish to make their published article immediately Open Access will need to either pay an Article Processing Charge or use an Article Credit in place of payment. All four of our peer-reviewed journals will offer Author Choice Open Access.

If an author does not wish to make his/her article Open Access then there is no change to the way the article is accessed by others, and no Article Processing Charge will be applied.

Our journals, quality standards, review and editorial processes will otherwise continue exactly as they are now.

Why not go fully Open Access right away?

ECS ultimately aims to achieve full Open Access across its four peer-reviewed journals, but we have not yet determined the most appropriate business model. As a nonprofit society we need to consider many elements of the way we work, and how publishing fully-OA journals will change those. While we do further research and further modelling, we realize we need to be offering authors the option of making their articles Open Access right away. Author Choice Open Access satisfies the immediate needs of authors.

How will people know if an article is freely available or not?

Articles that are immediately Open Access will be flagged as freely available at the Table of Contents level (and in TOC alerts) and at the abstract level in our Digital Library. The usage license under which they are made OA will also be visible. Readers can then follow the link to the full text if they wish to, and will be able to download it regardless of their subscriber status.

Does ECS have a Green OA policy for its journals?

Yes. Authors may deposit the pre-print and/or published versions of their articles in their institutional repository, with no embargo, provided that the files prepared by and/or formatted by ECS (and its vendors) are not used for that purpose. Any posting made or updated after the acceptance of the article for publication should include a link to the online abstract in the ECS publication of origin or to the entry page of that publication.

If authors choose to make their articles OA through Author Choice Open Access, the Version of Record (VoR) will be immediately freely available in our Digital Library. Authors may also deposit the published PDF of these OA articles in their institutional repositories, if they wish to.


Author FAQs

Why would I choose to make my article OA?

There are several reasons. You may, like us, believe that quality, peer-reviewed scientific research should be freely available to anyone who wishes to read it. In addition, studies across academic disciplines show that articles that are published as Open Access are downloaded more frequently. (There is some debate as to whether or not this leads to increased citation, but as our OA plan matures, we will be monitoring this and will be able to learn exactly what impact it has in our technical areas.) Finally, bodies that fund research are increasingly mandating that any output of that research is made Open Access as soon as it is published.

Does making my article OA change the peer-review or publication process in any way?

No, not at all. All processes will remain exactly as they are; and articles will be treated in the same way whether they are OA or not. ECS maintains the highest standards of peer review and will maintain these practices for all manuscript submissions.

Why do I have to pay?

Publishing rigorously peer-reviewed, edited, typeset, data-enriched journals is an expensive business. In a mostly online environment some of the activities are cheaper than in traditional paper publishing (printing, paper, and distribution costs are reduced) but others are increasingly expensive, and evolving technology continually throws up new challenges. Readers and authors expect to be able to do more in an electronic environment than they ever could before: link seamlessly from a footnote to the article it refers to; find out who funded the research reported in an article; find academic articles with a general search engine; view articles in several formats; search within an article for a particular word; find out how many views an article has had; find out how often it has been cited; access the original data underlying the conclusions of the research. The requirements of the research community and what they want to be able to do with its outputs in an electronic environment is always growing and publishers need to be able to meet those needs, on top of their traditional work of acting as stewards of quality through their peer-review and editorial processes.

Traditionally publication work has been funded by institutions, who pay a subscription to the publisher in exchange for access (either in print or online) to the journals produced. We would like to see ECS able to discard the subscriptions model altogether. However, until we are in a position to do that without jeopardizing our stability, we are ensuring that our subscription prices remain steady, and we are beginning to roll out a model where the work required to publish an accepted article is paid for before publication, in order that it can be accessed by anyone who wishes to read it.

We are striving to keep our Article Processing Charges at a moderate level.

We also realize that subscribing institutions have already contributed to our publishing costs (through their subscriptions) and so authors belonging to an institution that subscribes to ECS publications are entitled to unlimited Article Credits in place of Article Processing Charges at least until the end of 2015, if they wish to publish their articles as immediately Open Access.

Our individual and institutional members, who pay an annual fee to ECS for their membership, will be entitled to one Article Credit per member (or member representative) per year.

How do I know if I can use Article Credits from my institution?

You can check if your institution is a subscriber to ECS publications by visiting the ECS Digital Library whilst you are on campus. If a grey bar appears at the top of the page with your institution’s name, then you are eligible for Article Credits. When you submit your paper, if you select Author Choice Open Access you can indicate that you come from a subscribing institution. Assuming that the subscription is in place then you need to nothing more to get your article published as Open Access. If your institution is not a subscribing institution, and you thought it was, we will get in touch to ask you how you would like to go forward.

How do I use Article Credits if I am an ECS member?

When you submit your paper, if you select Author Choice Open Access you can indicate that you are an ECS member. We will then verify your membership is up to date. If it is not, we will get in touch to ask you how you would like to go forward.

How do I submit an article to ECS that I would like to have published as OA?

In the usual way. As you go through the manuscript submission process you will be guided through the choices you need to make about your article as you submit it.

How and when do I pay?

After your article has been accepted, ECS will send you an invoice to pay the Article Processing Charge, if appropriate.


Subscriber FAQs

Why are you levying Article Processing Charges while still keeping subscriptions? Are you “double–dipping”?

Producing quality peer-reviewed, edited, typeset, data-enriched journals is an expensive business. Traditionally this work has been funded by institutions, who pay a subscription to the publisher in exchange for access (either in print or online) to the journals produced. We would like to see ECS able to discard the subscriptions model altogether. However, until we are in a position to do that without jeopardizing our stability, we are ensuring that our subscription prices remain steady, and we are beginning to roll out a model where the work required to publish an article is paid for up front – before publication – in order that it can be accessible to anyone who wishes to read it.

We are striving to keep our Article Processing Charges moderate.

We also realize that subscribing institutions have already contributed to our publishing costs (through their subscriptions) and so each subscribing institution is given, as part of their subscriptions packages for 2014 and 2015, unlimited Article Credits. This means that, during 2014 and 2015, members of your institution can choose to publish their work as Open Access, and rather than pay an Article Processing Charge, they may use an Article Credit instead.

We are working to create a business model which will allow us to dispense with subscriptions altogether. Once we have that model, we will put together a road map of how to get there, while keeping the needs and requirements of our stakeholders in mind. We are working with SPARC on this. In the meantime, we see it as important to give authors the choice of making their articles Open Access immediately – and with Article Credits, those from subscribing institutions do not need to pay an Article Processing Charge. For ECS, this move is not about creating new revenue; it is about taking a first step on our OA journey.


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