Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

High-citation journal attributes its success to OA

Gary Taubes interviews Derek McPhee in the April issue of Thomson's In-Cites.  (Thanks to Dietrich Rordorf.)  Excerpt:

In a recent analysis of Essential Science Indicators data, the journal Molecules was named a New Entrant in the field of Chemistry. The journalís current record in this field includes 1,118 highly cited papers cited a total of 2,289 times to date. In the interview below, in-cites correspondent Gary Taubes talks with Dr. Derek McPhee, the Editor-in-Chief of Molecules....

Was there a change in policy or editorial direction that might account for your recent success?

The main one has been the decision to go entirely to open access with the author or institution pay model. Over the years, we tried a variety of models. We tried a subscription base, for instance, that would financially support the journal, but that didnít work terribly well. We had mixed models, in which papers whose authors did not want to pay fees could either contribute samples to the repository or their articles could be subscription-only access ópay per view. Those would be password-protected and so nobody could read them without paying for them. But we found that with so much free literature out there, thatís a hard sell. So over the past couple of years, weíve moved to be completely free to readers, with all payments coming from authors or institutions. Although because we get submissions often from developing countries, where $500 is a lot of money, in many instances the fees are waived....

Have there been specific developments in the fields served by your journal that may have contributed to your rising citation rate?

Not in the field itself so much as in electronic publishing as a whole. The whole advent of open-access publication and the Internet allowed for the proliferation of electronic journals. Molecules is perhaps unique in that it is one of the first and survived so long....