PLOS Community Action Publishing Agreement

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Big Ten Academic Alliance and PLOS Community Action Publishing Agreement


Under the umbrella of the BIG Collection, the Big Ten Academic Alliance has reached an agreement with PLOS to provide uncapped, no-fee publishing in two highly selective journals, PLOS Biology and PLOS Medicine. Part of a coordinated strategy to promote open science and open scholarship, the PLOS agreement is a focused pilot in collective action to create a sustainable, scalable open knowledge ecosystem across the BTAA. The three-year agreement between participating members of BTAA and PLOS began on January 1, 2021, and ends on December 31, 2023. There is one cost for the entire BTAA membership and benefits extend to most historically affiliated system, regional, and branch campuses. The cost per year will remain flat (0% inflation) and the consortium will receive a 1% consortial discount. There are no obligations to continue beyond the term of the contract. The BTAA and PLOS will collaborate on future data, metrics, and tools for institutions to evaluate Open Access publishing agreements.

PLOS’s Community Action Publishing (CAP) is its effort to sustain highly selective journal publishing without Article Processing Charges (APCs) for authors. More details about the model can be found here and here.

OA Publishing Opportunities

Corresponding authors from BTAA universities that have been accepted by PLOS Medicine and/or PLOS Biology during the Term will have their articles published for no additional fee, regardless of whether an article’s contributing authors’ institutions are members of the Community. There is no cap on the number of articles that can be published from any participating university.

Where the corresponding author’s institution is a non-member, PLOS will provide a twenty-five percent (25%) discount on the applicable APC in cases where the article lists a Community Member as a contributing author.

All published articles are immediately open access—available globally to read at no charge.
No change to workflow for authors or librarians is necessary as benefits will automatically extend to all authors from participating campuses who submit to either journal.

Participating Institutions

University of Chicago
University of Illinois*
Indiana University
University of Iowa
University of Maryland–College Park*
University of Michigan
Michigan State University
University of Minnesota
University of Nebraska
Northwestern University
Ohio State University
Pennsylvania State University
Purdue University
Rutgers University
University of Wisconsin

* The University of Illinois at Chicago and University of Maryland system campuses (besides College Park) are not covered by this agreement.