Universities UK has convened a new group to support and enhance the mandate of Jisc in negotiating publishing agreements with major academic publishers.
The formation of this new, high-level group recognises the importance of involving senior leaders from UK institutions in order to achieve sustainable, affordable and innovative agreements with major publishers.
Chair of the new group, Professor Stephen Decent, provost and deputy vice-chancellor at Manchester Metropolitan University says:
"The UK has made great progress in recent years towards the target of achieving open access to UK research, but if we are to ensure that progress continues and we are to achieve affordable, full and immediate open access to all UK research at speed then the most senior level support to our negotiators is essential.
"We have an opportunity to support the transition to open access and more importantly open research. That transition is challenging but has the potential to deliver real change in universities’ relationships with publishers of all sizes and across all disciplines.”
Liam Earney, Jisc’s executive director for digital resources, says:
“The research publishing environment is facing huge change with high-profile negotiations in Europe and the US, the UKRI’s review of its open access policy, the establishment of cOAlition S and the release of a new Wellcome Trust OA policy.
"It is essential that our negotiations with publishers are backed by senior leaders to help universities overcome the challenges and maximise the benefits offered by this changing environment.”
The group will meet for the first time in early 2020, and will comprise senior representatives from across UK universities, sector bodies and observers from major UK funders. Its work will be informed by an expert practitioner group, to ensure alignment between strategy and implementation at the national and institutional level.