OA digest

March open access update now available

Welcome to the March 2019 issue

Download the update as a PDF
Download the update as a PDF

Open access is now a pervasive influence across many different areas of Jisc activity. We are pleased to report progress on a number of different fronts, from engaging with publishers for service content, through supporting professional skill development, to structural analysis of supply chains and its effect on open monographs. Elsevier has agreed to develop interoperability between Router and PURE, part of our ongoing efforts to integrate with CRIS systems to increase the use of the service. Our work in supporting professional skills development has moved into a new phase with the Scholarly Communications Competencies Coalition and is proving extremely popular. The RLUK Conference heard about work on developing best practice in the library supply chain and encouraging the integration of OA content into collection management policies. We are also delighted to report on a significant new service, the Jisc open research hub, which has been developed with institutions as a repository solution to match sector needs and aspirations. In each case Jisc is active in representing members’ interests in the development of each different field, and, as ever, we are always interested in your feedback to make our guidance, advice and services relevant to you.

Bill Hubbard, Head of scholarly communications support

Policy compliance

Helping you to meet and demonstrate compliance with the range of different funders’ and publishers’ requirements

Publications Router

Elsevier have now said they will work with Jisc to develop interoperability between Router and Pure, their CRIS product, by October. The commitment was made in a statement of intent announced in February. It will give a significant boost to the numbers of institutions able to benefit from the Router service. Another major CRIS vendor is also working with us and two institutions to test a workflow that will enable their system to ingest notifications sent from Router. On the publisher side, we have also been able to announce that Elsevier has been working with us to enable Router to distribute metadata notifications from Science Direct. The resulting feed will go live soon. Meanwhile, OA publisher MDPI has started supplying full text via Router, further adding to the list of content providers.

Sherpa services

Work continued on our service improvement programme and we have this period focused on the datasets that drive Sherpa services. We have been reviewing the Sherpa RoMEO dataset and have made great progress towards transferring this data to the new version of Sherpa RoMEO. Once this data transfer work is complete, we will be releasing a public beta of Sherpa RoMEO v2 for community consultation and feedback. The implementation of Plan S principles is influencing the development of our services as both RoMEO and OpenDOAR have been identified by cOAlitionS as essential support services. Here we are upgrading our infrastructure to assist the implementation of Plan S-compliant policies.

Cost management

Support with improving your processes and systems, providing shared services and negotiations agreements, in order to manage the costs of OA and subscriptions

Monitor services

We are currently planning our next Monitor user group meeting, to be held this Spring, to once again bring together our users to discuss the development of Monitor and how we can continue to improve the service to meet members’ needs. The confirmed date and venue will be circulated to the Monitor Users email list soon.

We have now released the newly refreshed version of Monitor UK (v2.0), which includes a significantly updated and more user-friendly interface, and more intuitive charts and tables.  A blog post will be published to share further detail on this update.

Monitor Local continues to be developed with regular incremental updates.  A recent key update was the introduction of ‘review’ versions of each of our standard reports, which include local identifiers, to allow easier cross-checking of reports, as well as usability enhancements.  New functionality coming soon will include a person data upload tool, and more advanced search options.

Jisc Collections

Negotiating transformative open access agreements is our priority focus – not just with the large publishers but with society presses too. Ahead of the Wellcome Trust 2020 policy, we are approaching a number of smaller and society publishers to negotiate transformative agreements and sustainable and simplified routes to compliance.

Negotiations with SpringerNature for the renewal of the SpringerCompact read and publish model have been concluded and contracts are being finalised. This transformative agreement will enable the sector to constrain the costs of both reading and publishing, support compliance with funder mandates and continue the simple administrative processes implemented previously.

The framework for a transformative agreement with Wiley has been agreed and while we continue negotiations and explore options that reflect the feedback gathered from the consultation undertaken in late 2019, the existing Wiley agreement has been extended into 2019.

Agreements have been concluded with ACS and CUP that offer institutions options to support open access publishing whilst constraining costs.

Discovery, usage, and impact

Supporting you to improve the visibility of your repository and demonstrate the reach and impact of your research


A recent and popular addition to IRUS-UK, Repository Report 3, indicates the number of successful item downloads by month and country where the usage occurred for all participating repositories. The report has proved useful from an advocacy and promotional perspective. Development of a widget enabling IRUS-UK statistics to be embedded into institutional repositories is in testing at present and expected to be released in 2019 Q2. This user-requested development will offer greater flexibility to access and use IRUS statistics. Developments to support IRUS in the transition to COUNTER Release 5 are underway.

The Jisc ORCID national consortium

We currently have 92 members in the consortium.  We are currently running a number of events that are focused on exploring with the community how we can improve the way information about ORCID IDs can be pulled together and displayed.  We also have our ORCID members’ day on 15th May in Birmingham, which is focused on doing more with ORCID. This will include sessions on connecting institutional systems, advocacy and experience from within our consortium.


OPERAS is a European research infrastructure for the development of open scholarly communication in the social sciences and humanities. Jisc has been accepted as a member of OPERAS and will represent the UK.


OpenAIRE services continue to be developed for the open access/open science community. If you have an interest in helping us test these services, which will be rolled into the Legal Entity offer, please get in touch with Frank Manista, We need researchers, project managers, service providers, and funders! In addition, as a reminder, Jisc is the National Open Access Desk (NOAD) for OpenAIRE and we are here to help with any questions you may have about Horizon 2020’s policies regarding any funded projects, particularly about requirements to make your research outputs OA. We write to all UK project coordinators twice a year, but get in touch for more information:

Open research hub

The Jisc open research hub, formerly the Research Data Shared Service project, is a modular service providing repository, preservation and reporting functionality for HEIs to manage and disseminate research outputs. Open research hub transitioned to service at the end of November 2018 and we are now working with a number of our pilot institutions to provide them with their own tenancy of the Jisc repository.

Just prior to transition , the service achieved ISO27001 accreditation.  Since then, our pilots have undertaken extensive User Acceptance Testing (UAT) of the Jisc repository.  In addition, the service has been audited with an external tester so that we can meet the Web Content Accessibility standard (WCAG 2.1 AA).  We are now processing the findings of both the UAT and the accessibility audit, and working on bug fixes and UX enhancements.

Open research hub has, in the first instance, been developed as an end to end institutional research data management service.  However, Jisc is exploring the functionality required to act additionally as a next generation institutional repository for open access outputs.  Working with a number of institutions, we are gathering requirements with the aim of producing a proof of concept by the spring of 2019. This work is part of a broader programme to ensure that Jisc’s OA portfolio will meet the requirements of Plan S, future Research Excellence Framework submissions and the longer-term shift to open science practices.  Through Open research hub’s community governance structure, UK HEIs will have a strong voice in the development of the service’s OA functionality.

The Open research hub team are currently visiting interested HEIs to discuss how the service can meet their research management and open research requirements, both now and in the future. If your institution is interested in learning more about the Jisc open research hub, please contact your Jisc Account Manager or Tamsin Burland.

Maintaining OA good practice

OA monographs

A recommendation of Jisc’s landscape study on New University Presses and Scholar led publishing was to look at the culture of libraries towards the acquisition of open content. Discussion at a workshop on the monograph supply chain suggested that less attention is paid to open book content as it is ‘free’ and so perceived as less valuable. In 2019, Jisc is focusing on developing best practice in the library supply chain and encouraging the integration of OA content into collection management policies.  A paper was presented at the this month and will be followed by a practitioner workshop at the NAG Collection Development seminar and a paper at the LIBER conference in Dublin.

Supporting skills for scholarly communication and open access

We’ve been working with a range of institutions and organisations who have an interest in supporting skills development for those involved in scholarly communications support role. We recently published a blog post summarising activities and the group now has a name, the Scholarly Communications Competencies Coalition (SC3) and will shortly have a web presence on the UKCoRR web site.

We also ran a community event in February in York where institutions presented on current issues they face in staff development and recruitment. Attendees worked together to prioritise skills and discuss solutions. We’ll be reporting on our blog very soon.

Capturing practice research: improving visibility and searchability

We ran this highly popular workshop in March, where researchers, research managers, respository staff and librarians discussed key issues in capturing practice research. The workshop was delivered in collaboration with PRAG-UK, ARMA and representatives of the repository community. We hope to continue this collaboration beyond the event. Find the slides, recordings and write up in our blog post.

Open access in further education

In February we ran a short survey to explore the use of open access content by further education colleges. We are following this up with interviews. We plan to use this information to inform service development for CORE and to develop our advice and guidance to further education. A report and recommendations will be shared.

Blog post round up

Links to blog posts from the last 3 months which you may have missed

Keeping up to date

In between our quarterly digest you can keep up to date with our activities on this scholarly communications blog or follow us at @JiscOpenAccess on Twitter.

Key dates

Events we’re running or where you’ll catch Jisc staff speaking




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