Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Dramatic Growth of Open Access: December 31, 2013: first open source edition

Happy 2014 to everyone involved in making open access happen!!!

Correction Jan. 10:  the 2013 number is 365,000, not 265,000. Thanks to Miguel Navas for spotting the error.

Update Jan. 7th: thanks to Wouter Gerritsma via the GOAL open access list for info on the healthy growth of OA in the Netherlands, from 270 thousand OA publications in Narcis in 2011 to 365 thousand in 2013. Congratulations to Narcis and Netherlands OA!

Back to everyone involved in making open access happen:
That's a lot of people. As this chart illustrating the growth of authors participating in the Social Sciences Research Network shows, there are now close to a quarter of a million authors participating in just this one open access initiative, with 66,000 authors signing on in the past two years. 

The Directory of Open Access Journals continues to add titles at the remarkable rate of 3.5 journals per day, a feat made all the more remarkable by the DOAJ's vigorous weeding project which leaves the total about 200 titles less than on Dec. 11th!

DOAJ is about more than a vetted title list, though; it's also a search engine for articles in the repositories. This chart shows that the growth in the fully open access journals listed in DOAJ is at the article level, not just the journal level, with the number of searchable articles growing from under 200,000 in 2004 to close to 1.6 million today. 

Every day repository services OpenDOAR and the Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE) add a new repository, and BASE grows by about 45,000 documents per day. The Internet Archive (IA) continues to amaze, with over 374 billion webpages archived - and it's good to see that IA is over the top for their fundraising to replace a server destroyed by fire (but more donations to this and many other OA services are always welcome, of course).

This is the first open source issue of The Dramatic Growth of Open Access. To facilitate re-use of the data source files by anyone:
  • the data files are available in open document and csv format (proprietary software not required for downloading). The table below illustrates the show growth file.
  •  the license has been removed, and replaced by some notes are appropriate attribution and "licensing" for this kind of work, as follows:
To attribute or not to attribute?
If you are using the data for scholarly purposes, you should cite your source. This is not a copyright issue, it's a question of appropriate scholarly practice. Using this data in a scholarly work without citing the source would constitute plagiarism, a serious offense in academia which can cost students their degrees and scholars their jobs. Aside from the question of plagiarism, when writing scholarly works you should point to your sources so that readers can look up the data themselves. There is no need for copyright! If you are using the data for the purposes of promoting open access, attribution is welcome and encouraged, but please use your judgement. If you're using a few figures on an open access poster or presentation, don't let attribution take away from the effectiveness of your presentation.

My hope is that this small step will encourage all of us in the open access movement to move away from our hard critical approaches to move to a new era of open discussion on the nuances of best practices to transition to open access.  While I remain firmly opposed to what I consider the overly simplistic and dangerous perspective equating the Creative Commons CC-BY license with open access, I see the value of open sharing of data and would welcome a discussion about how to make this happen.

Data files
(In google docs for now, will be posted to my institutional repository when this service is available):

2013 dramatic growth.ods: figures and annual growth (as shown below)
csv format:

Full data edition
Open document format
csv format

This post is part of the Dramatic Growth of Open Access series.

The numbers

Dec. 31, 2013 Annual growth (number) Annual growth (percentage) Plain language growth explanation
Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)
# of DOAJ journals 9,804 1,285 15% 3.5 journals per day
# of titles added last 30 days (DOAJ)
# of countries (added March 31, 2013) (DOAJ) 124 124
# of journals searchable at article level (DOAJ) 5,636 1,389 33%
# of articles searchable at article level (DOAJ) 1,573,847 618,127 65% 1,700 articles per day
Directory of Open Access Books
# of academic peer-reviewed books (DOAB) 1,619 360 29% 1 book per day
# publishers (DOAB) 54 19 54% 1.5 publishers per month
Elektronische Zeitschriftenbibliotek - Electronic Journals Library  # journals that can be read free of charge 43,498 5,693 15% 16 journals per day
Highwire Press Free Online Fulltext Articles
# free articles (Highwire) 2,328,293 176,873 8% 485 articles per day
total # articles (Highwire) 7,251,816 512,693 8%
Highwire Completely Free Sites 89 26 41%
Sites with free back issues (Highwire) 279 -7 -2%
OpenDOAR # repositories 2,553 300 13% 1 repository per day
Registry of Open Access Repositories (ROAR) # repositories 3,565 225 7%
BASE:  Bielefeld Academic Search Engine
# of documents (BASE) 56,716,421 16,209,516 40% 45,000 documents per day
# of content providers (BASE) 2,788 371 15% 1 new content provider per day
# items Dec. 2011 - posted on PMC website(from ROAR) 100% fulltext - for historical purposes - for more accurate data, see PMC Free tab 2,900,000 300,000 12% over 800 items per day
# journals actively participating in PMC (total minus predecessor minus no new content) 1,690 226 15%
# journals in PMC with immediate free access 1,188 162 16%
# journals in PMC with all articles open access 1,021 128 14%
# journals in PMC with some articles open access 287 40 16%
# journals that deposit ALL articles in PMC (from PMC website - full participation journals) 1,394 195 16%
# journals that deposit NIH-funded articles in PMC (from PMC website - NIH portfolio journals) 273 28 11%
# journals that deposit selected articles in PMC (from PMC website) 2,414 496 26%
arXiv 902,669 92,820 11% 250 items per day
RePEC total items (from LogEC as of March 2012) (Sept. 2013 note) 1,481,968
RePEC online (fulltext) (downloadable as of March 2012) 1,341,432
Social Sciences Research Network
Abstracts (SSRN) 522,846 63,371 14%
Full text papers (SSRN) 428,336 55,564 15% 150 papers per day
Authors (SSRN) 242,808 28,849 13%
Papers received in last 12 months (SSRN) 66,368 -1,399 -2%
Paper downloads - to date (SSRN) 71,902,968 10,911,825 18%
Paper downloads - last 12 months (SSRN) 10,910,691 143,001 1%
Paper downloads - last 30 days (SSRN) 778,301 -63,098 -7%
Open Access Mandate Policies ROARMAP
Sub-Institutional (was Departmental) Policies (ROARMAP) 43 9 26%
Funder Policies (ROARMAP) 83 29 54%
Institutional Policies (ROARMAP) 191 28 17%
Multi-institutional Policies (ROARMAP) 5 1 25%
Thesis Policies (ROARMAP) 107 9 9%
Total Policies (ROARMAP) 429 76 22% 1.5 policies per week
Proposed Mandates Policies (ROARMAP) 27 4 17%
Internet Archive
Webpages (Internet Archive) 374,000,000 374,000,000
Moving images (movies)  (Internet Archive) 1,499,311 388,433 35%
Live music archive (concerts) (Internet Archive) 123,522 13,074 12%
Audio (recordings)  (Internet Archive) 1,818,913 344,157 23%
Texts  (Internet Archive) 5,668,948 1,887,806 50% 5,000 texts per day


  1. Sorry but I think that there is a mistake in first paragraph. It says "from 270 thousand OA publications in Narcis in 2011 to 265 thousand in 2013". Is 270 to 265 a growth?? Thanks!

    1. Oops, it's 365,000, not 265,000. My apologies for the error and thanks for letting me know, Miguel. I've noted the correction above.

  2. Thank you, Heather :)


Thank you for your comment. Comments on IJPE are moderated.