This Taylor & Francis survey asked researchers around the globe for their opinions on a range of important scholarly communication issues, including:
- Publishing habits: which publishing options researchers are currently choosing, including their use of green and gold open access, and how they decide which journals to submit to.
- Licenses: researchers’ preferences for sharing and permitting reuse of different versions of their work.
- Future scenarios for scholarly communication: including what researchers believe the impacts might be if all journals moved to publishing only open access articles, and the factors they think are important for ongoing and sustainable research communication in their field.
Researchers support the principle of everyone having access to their research.
88% of researchers agree or strongly agree that there is value in anyone being able to access their work.
Fewer than half of researchers believe that everyone who needs access to their work has it.
41% agree or strongly agree that their research is already available to those who need it. Just 33% of Humanities and Social Science researchers report satisfaction with availability of their research.
Take up of open access options is growing, particularly for gold OA.
A small majority (54%) of respondents published their research open access (OA) in the last 12 months, using one or more of the OA options (gold and green). 42% have published the final version of an article open access in a journal (gold OA) in the last 12 months.
Use of self-archiving (green OA) options is low.
18% of researchers have archived the accepted version of their research in a repository and just 15% have deposited the original version. 26% of researchers made use of one or both of these green OA options in the last 12 months.
When choosing which journal to submit to, availability of open options is less important than other factors.
Authors prioritize reputation, readership, and Impact Factor in their journal selections.
Researchers’ least preferred publishing license is CC BY, the Creative Commons Attribution License.
The publishing license with the highest number of first preferences is CC BY-NC-ND and the option with the highest combined first and second preferences is the Exclusive License to Publish.
Only 20% of researchers would definitely submit to a fully open access journal which charged for publication.
40% of researchers wouldn’t submit to such a journal, primarily because they don’t have access to funds or don’t like paying to publish on principle. 40% of respondents might submit to a fully open access journal with fees, depending on the cost and whether funding is available to them.
Greater openness is not the only priority to ensure ongoing and sustainable research activities.
84% agree or strongly agree that support for early career researchers is important, 79% said more support for lower income countries is needed, and 74% prioritize ensuring diversity.
The many initiatives and services developed to encourage the growth of open access are not yet reaching the consciousness of researchers.
66% of researchers didn’t recognize any of 11 different initiatives presented to them, from the 2002 Budapest Open Access Declaration (12% awareness) to the Open Access Button (2%). Just 5% of researchers are aware of Plan S.