Open Access Week – Routes to Open Access II

To celebrate International Open Access Week, we are highlighting some routes to achieve open access that are available to University of Reading researchers.

Professor Emma Borg published one of her recent papers in a Springer hybrid journal using the Springer Open Choice deal. Here, she explains how she arranged gold open access publication with the publisher.

When you were choosing where to publish, were you thinking about submitting to journals that would be able to make your article open access?
This paper was in a new research area where neither I nor my co-author Bradford Hooker had published before. We asked colleagues at Oxford University what the best journal was in the subject area and submitted to that one. The article was planned as an impact piece so we did wonder about applying for Reading University funds to make it open access.

Did the journal ask you about open access when your paper was accepted? Did they make you aware of any deals or discounts?
I hadn’t looked into what deals with publishers were available through Reading University in advance so it was a pleasant surprise to find out from Springer that there was an arrangement in place with my institution.

How easy was the process to apply for and get open access funding?
Very easy. I didn’t have to apply for funding or complete any forms as the gold open access was covered by a general JISC agreement. The open access team in the Library confirmed to the publisher that I was a member of Reading University staff and it all went through very smoothly.

Has your article received much attention since it was published?
Gold open access was particularly good for this article as it was an impact piece that we wanted to have a broader reach than our standard academic papers. We are hoping that publishing as gold open access will result in a wider readership for the paper.

As the paper was published as Gold Open Access with a CC BY 4.0 Creative Commons license, I was able to post it legally on ResearchGate and The paper has had 27 reads on ResearchGate and 141 views on

Altmetric score

Altmetric attention score for Emma’s paper

The paper has got an Altmetric score of 2 and is number 28 out of 45 outputs from the journal that were published at the same time.

The paper has also been deposited in University of Reading’s institutional repository, CentAUR, and the full text of the article has been downloaded 21 times since April 2017.

I think it might be a bit too  early to tell whether open access has helped with citations.

Will you try and make your next output open access?
I might look at the gold open access route for future publications. I tend to make publishing decisions based on discipline-specific views about the best journals but I may start looking at some bibliometrics and the availability of gold open access in future. By uploading my articles to CentAUR, I’m already making sure that they will be available via the green open access route.

Emma’s paper was published in the Journal of Business Ethics
Borg, E. & Hooker, B. Epistemic Virtues Versus Ethical Values in the Financial Services Sector. J Bus Ethics (2017).




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