The new DEAL contract with Springer Nature – its many advantages for Open Access publishing and how you benefit from them

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The boost for Open Access publishing through the DEAL contracts is now entering its second phase. After Wiley, another major academic publisher, Springer Nature, has negotiated a comprehensive agreement with the DEAL project. The contract is a so-called publish and read agreement. It consists of two components: In addition to the possibility of publishing in around 2,500 Springer Nature journals in Open Access (“Publish”), it also includes access to almost all of the publisher’s journal content (with exception of all “Nature” branded journals) that is still in Closed Access and therefore only available by subscription (“Read”). As in the case of Wiley, Chemnitz University of Technology (TU Chemnitz) is also participating in this new DEAL contract.
Due to the publishing component, it is possible for researchers at TU Chemnitz to publish their articles in Springer Nature journals in Open Access with very little administrative effort. The costs incurred are automatically covered by the budget of the University Library, for which you do not have to submit applications or forward invoices to the library. As a researcher, you therefore benefit from the many advantages of Open Access publishing and are additionally relieved of the bureaucratic hurdles associated sometimes with Open Access publishing, so that you can focus fully on your research.
Below we would like to briefly outline the most important cornerstones of the publishing component of the agreement and explain the practical significance of these for you as an author.


1. In which Springer Nature journals can eligible authors publish under the new DEAL agreement?
According to the common Open Access nomenclature, Springer Nature offers two variants of Open Access publications: On the one hand, there are hybrid journals in which OA articles appear alongside traditional articles to which access is only possible via a subscription to the journal. Springer Nature calls this option “Open Choice”. And there are pure Open Access journals in which articles are published exclusively in Open Access. In general Open Access terminology this model is called “Gold Open Access”, Springer Nature calls this variant “Fully Open Access”. Both journal types, “Open Choice” and “Fully Open Access” are relevant for the Springer Nature DEAL.

Journals that belong to the “Nature” trademark are so far excluded from the DEAL with the publisher. The two renowned Fully Open Access journals “Nature Communications” and “Scientific Reports” are an exception. The complete and continuously updated list of Springer Nature journals, which are part of the DEAL agreement, can be found here.

2. From when does the DEAL agreement with Springer Nature apply?
The participation of the TU Chemnitz in the Springer Nature DEAL agreement officially started on 15 May 2020. Articles in hybrid journals (“Open Choice”), however, could be published under the DEAL already from 1 January 2020. Since the beginning of the year, eligible authors affiliated with TU Chemnitz have been informed about that possibility while submitting their manuscripts to Springer Nature journals and they were asked to select the Open Access option.
In Gold Open Access journals (“Fully Open Access”) you can publish articles under the DEAL with Springer Nature from 1 August 2020. The decisive factor for the agreement to take effect is the “online publication date” of an article.
For publications in Gold Open Access journals that are expected to be published before 1 August 2020 and are therefore not yet covered by the DEAL conditions, an application for funding from the the university’s publication fund can be submitted to the library instead.

3. Which types of articles are covered by the Springer Nature DEAL?
Hybrid journals (“Open Choice”): ‘Research Articles’ (= Original Paper, Review Paper, Brief Communication) and ‘Non-Research Articles’ (= Editorial Notes, Book Reviews, Letters, Reports) are accepted. Articles in special interest and popular magazines (like “Spektrum der Wissenschaft” and others) are excluded (see title list).
Gold Open Access journals (“Fully Open Access”): Only ‘Research Articles’ (= Original Paper, Review Paper, Brief Communication) are accepted.

4. Who is entitled to publish in accordance with the Springer-Nature-DEAL agreement?
Authors with the status ‘corresponding author’ and affiliation to the TU Chemnitz (active  and associate members = „Mitglieder und Angehörige“, according to § 4 of the university’s constitution) can publish under the Springer Nature DEAL in Open Access.

5. Is it necessary to submit an application for publication funding to the library in order to publish articles under the DEAL with Springer Nature?
No, the charges for financing Open Access under the Springer Nature DEAL are covered centrally by the University Library. You do not have to submit an application for funding.

6. Will I as an author be charged by the publisher for Open Access publication fees?
You will not receive an invoice for your article from the publisher. The publication fees are invoiced directly to the University Library.

7. What do I have to consider when submitting an article in order to benefit from the DEAL agreements?
When submitting an article it is necessary to select the TU Chemnitz as an affiliated institution. You must also choose the Open Access option. Please do not select the opt-out option.

8. Which Creative Commons license can and should I choose?
The Alliance of German Science Organisations recommends using the Creative Commons licence “CC-BY 4.0″ for scientific publications. CC-BY is the least restrictive type of license, which allows others to reuse your work as widely as possible while ensuring that you are named as the author of the original work. Within the Springer Nature DEAL, CC-BY is the standard license. Alternatively, CC-BY-NC can be selected as the standard license, which excludes commercial re-use. However, this license can quickly lead to a restriction of future desired usage scenarios.
Nevertheless, it is possible that one of the Creative Commons license variants not mentioned above is the most suitable for your research output and its desired usage scenarios. According to the DEAL agreement, you as the author have the right to select Open Access licenses outside of CC-BY and CC-BY-NC. Please inform your editor or journal representative as soon as possible after your article has been accepted for publication that you wish to do so.
If you are unsure which license is suitable for your publication, use the license generator for Creative Commons licenses or contact us. We will be happy to advise you.

9. Further information

10. Contact for questions about the Springer Nature DEAL
We will gladly answer your questions. Please contact us:

Ute Blumtritt, Open Access Officer
(ute.blumtritt@bibliothek.tu-chemnitz.de)

Christian Schmidt, Head of Acquisitions
(christian.schmidt@bibliothek.tu-chemnitz.de)

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