SANLiC Signs First Transformational Agreement with Elsevier

February 27, 2023 – Cape Town

The South African National Library and Information Consortium (SANLiC) announced today the signing of a three-year transformational agreement with Elsevier (2023-2025). The landmark agreement combines reading and publishing services in ScienceDirect Freedom Collection journals in a single agreement for participating SANLiC institutions.

“We are delighted that this agreement includes Open Access publishing rights in hybrid ScienceDirect journals and developmental programme to support growth and development in the South African Higher Education and research community. This is a most significant advance on prior agreements which were limited to read access to these information resources only,” said Ms Ellen Tise, Chairperson of the SANLiC Board of Directors. “This agreement enables us to repurpose subscription expenditure to finance Open Access publishing and to significantly enhance the research and learning capabilities of South African institutions.”

Before this agreement, Elsevier consumed the largest share of South African subscription expenditure (read access) and is currently South Africa’s largest venue for subscription-based publishing behind a paywall. This cost-neutral agreement enables participating institutions to repurpose subscription expenditure to finance the cost of open access publishing in hybrid journals on behalf of their researchers.  In so doing the agreement enables a flip of an estimated 16% of annual South African research from behind the paywall to open access. Given that research published in open access enjoys far more usage and citations than in the subscription publishing model, the benefits for the advancement and distribution of South African scholarship are spectacular.

The deal guarantees prior reading access to closed and more than 1 660 hybrid journals. In addition, authors in participating institutions will be able to publish accepted articles open access in Elsevier’s hybrid journals without article processing charges (APCs). While the number of articles published annually are capped in this agreement, the cap matches our current and forecasted hybrid article output. Furthermore, authors from participating institutions will also enjoy a discount on APCs in Elsevier’s more than 570 fully Open Access (gold) journals. Elsevier has also agreed to a developmental programme to support growth and development in the South African researcher community.

The agreement ensures no disruption for authors to the normal article submission workflow for hybrid journals; they need only confirm acceptance of the OA entitlement under this agreement at the point when their article is accepted for publication. Once the author accepts, the article will automatically be published under a CC BY or CC BY-NC-ND license as determined by the corresponding author, subject to conditions (and certain society journals excepted). There will be no APCs. South Africa’s research will become more visible as Elsevier’s hybrid journals transition toward full open access.

To learn more about this agreement and how it impacts on researchers from participating institutions, visit Elsevier’s website.

Ms Ellen Tise
SANLiC Board of Directors

Media Contact:
Glenn Truran (SANLiC) – Click here to email.

Related news & content


Share This