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Open access could reduce cost of scientific publishing

BMJ 2004; 328 doi: (Published 06 May 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;328:1094
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. London

    Making scientific research available for free on the internet rather than through subscription journals could reduce the cost of publishing research by up to 30%, a report published this week says.

    The report, Costs and Business Models in Scientific Research Publishing(available at indicates that an open access model of scientific publishing—where authors of a research paper pay for their research to be peer reviewed and made available on the web free of charge to readers—is economically viable.

    It was based on a study by the Wellcome Trust, a research funding charity, that analysed the costs of publishing scientific, technical, and medical research articles by comparing two options: the “subscriber pays” model, in which readers pay for printed journals or online access, and the “author pays” model. Estimates of cost were based on discussions with senior staff across a range of journals …

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