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Open Research

Introduces the open research movement, and goes into more detail about different aspects of this movement, including open access.

Elsevier Negotiations

The UK Universities sector is currently negotiating with academic publishing giant Elsevier to reduce subscription costs for Universities, and to ensure full and immediate open access to UK research published by Elsevier. If successful, Essex academics and researchers will benefit from a read and publish deal with Elsevier that complies with cOAlition S funder requirements. These requirements mandate that publicly-funded research be publicly available to everyone, for free.

As a University, we support this publication model, and provide resources on open access publishing in our open access guide, and in the University's open access guidance. We feel it’s important for the Essex community to be aware of their publishing options, and feel they have a voice in the negotiations that will impact their opportunities for publication.

This page provides an overview of the Elsevier negotiations and how Essex is being represented. Your views would be welcomed to help inform our responses as and when we are given the opportunity to contribute to discussions around these negotiations. Please email us at if you have any thoughts, questions, or concerns.

Negotiations Overview

(Adapted from University of Cambridge negotiation webpages)

The contract between academic publisher Elsevier and UK Universities is due for renewal in December 2021.

The ‘Plan S’ initiative for open access publishing requires that from 2021, scientific publications that result from research funded by public grants be published in compliant Open Access journals or platforms.

Despite publishing over 20% of UK output, Elsevier is unusual in not having established a transitional and Plan S-compliant open access agreement with UK universities.

UK Universities agreed their priorities for the next Elsevier agreement in 2020 and began negotiations in March 2021.

The negotiations are governed by two groups; the Universities UK content negotiation strategy group and the content expert group. Representatives from each group will sit on the official negotiation team and Jisc, the UK not-for-profit digital services provider for education and research, facilitates the overall negotiations.

The aim is to secure a read and publish agreement with Elsevier, converting subscription expenditure to support immediate open access publishing, and maintaining access to paywalled content for a reduced fee.

Jisc has dedicated webpages for the Elsevier negotiations and produced the following video to highlight the key issues.

Your views regarding the issues raised on this page would be welcomed, so please contact us via if you have any thoughts. These views would be particularly useful to help to inform our responses as and when we are given the opportunity to contribute to discussions around these negotiations.