This is a preliminary list of scholar-led Open Access communication projects and their information sources for further investigation. The page also includes key resources for connecting and engaging in the topics related to scholar-led Open Access projects.



The Scientific Electronic Library, established in Brazil in 1998, is a successful collaborative multi-national infrastructure program for OA journals and other OA scholarly outputs, enhancing the visibility and discoverability of scientific publications from Lain America. SciELO supports and sustains the Diamond OA ecosystem in Latin America and a network of scholarly-led regional efforts without relying on commercial publishers. It utilizes a decentralized model to support the Network covering 17 countries and around 1,300 active journals. The Network operates national journal collections from 13 countries in the Lain American region and includes SciELO South Africa, SciELO España, and SciELO Portugal from outside the region. SciELO West Indies is another regional collection in the Network. In addition, the Network operates the SciELO Preprints server, the SciELO Data Depository, and the SciELO Books collection. The infrastructures required for editing, reviewing, and publishing processes are being managed in collaboration with the Public Knowledge Project, with the use of technical infrastructures such as the Open Journal System (OJS), Open Monograph System (OMP), and Open Reprint System (ORS). The SciELO Network continuously improves and enhances the indexing systems, addressing quality and evaluation indicators and interoperability with other regional cataloguing systems. The strength and growth of SciELO are attributed to the participation of universities, researchers, libraries, scientific associations and governmental support for the Network. The majority of the journals published in the Network are Diamond OA journals with no cost to read and publish. However, the APC business model is encroaching on the Network, and the sustainability of Diamond OA is a challenging issue.


          • Beigel, Fernanda, Abel L. Packer, Osvaldo Gallardo, and Maximiliano Salatino. “OLIVA: The Scientific Production Indexed in Latin America and the Caribbean. Disciplinary Diversity, Institutional Collaboration, and Multilingualism in SciELO and Redalyc (1995-2018).” SciELO Preprints, August 22, 2022.

              • Khanna, Saurabh, Jon Ball, Juan Pablo Alperin, and John Willinsky. “Recalibrating the Scope of Scholarly Publishing: A Modest Step in a Vast Decolonization Process.” SciELO Preprints, November 11, 2022.


              Since 2019, AmeliCA has led its efforts toward promoting Diamon OA journals. The initiative conceived and started in the South and for the South, AmeliCA “is now open to all journals from the globe that work for an inclusive, equitable and sustainable science communication ecosystem.” AmeliCA lists its ten principles and values regarding Open Access, including benefits for society, authors retaining copyright, no embargo period, disciplinary diversity and dynamics, and non-profit and non-subordination.



                COPIM: The Community-led Open Publication Infrastructures for Monographs.


                    • ScholarLed, is a blog by a consortium of five scholar-led, not-for-profit, open access book publishers.

                    • Barnes, Sherri L. “The Community-Led Open Publication Infrastructures for Monographs (COPIM) Project: A Transformative Open Access Monograph Initiative | Barnes | College & Research Libraries News,” December 9, 2020.

                    • Fathallah, Judith. “Open Access Monographs: Myths, Truths and Implications in the Wake of UKRI Open Access Policy.” LIBER Quarterly: The Journal of the Association of European Research Libraries 32, no. 1 (February 2, 2022).

                    • Morka, Agata, and Rupert Gatti. “Academic Libraries and Open Access Books in Europe: A Landscape Study.” Community-Led Open Publication Infrastructures for Monographs (COPIM), January 31, 2021.


                  Radical Open Access Collective:

                  “Formed in 2015, the Radical Open Access Collective is a community of scholar-led, not-for-profit presses, journals and other open access projects. Now consisting of more than 70 members, we promote a progressive vision for open publishing in the humanities and social sciences.”



                    Open Library of Humanities

                    The OLH platform was launched in 2015 and currently publishes 28 Diamond OA, peer-review journals in humanities disciplines and interdisciplinary journals, based at Birkbeck, University of London. Their journals involve no cost for authors to publish, and the content is freely available. The platform received core funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in 2013 and currently relies on funds from an international network of participating libraries. According to their website, the platform is equipped with “high-quality presentation, annotative functionality, robust digital preservation, strong discoverability and easy-to-share social media buttons.”


                        • Eve, Martin Paul, Paula Clemente Vega, and Caroline Edwards. “Lessons from the Open Library of Humanities.” Liber Quarterly: The Journal of European Research Libraries 30, no. 1 (2020).


                      Humanities Commons



                        Library Publishing Coalition


                            • Schlosser, Melanie. “Building Capacity for Academy-Owned Publishing through the Library Publishing Coalition.” Library Trends 67, no. 2 (2018): 359–75.

                            • Lippincott, Sarah. “The Library Publishing Coalition: organizing libraries to enhance scholarly publishing.” Insights 29, no. 2 (2016).

                          Selected Recorded Presentations on Thinking Around Community-Led/Scholar-Led Open Access Projects


                          Christie Rowe(McGill University) presented at the 2022 Annual Meeting of the Southern California Earthquake Center, with the acknowledgement of the contribution by Samantha Teplitzky (UC Berkeley) and Jessica Lange (McGill U).

                          Rowe introduces Seismica, a community-driven open-access peer-reviewed research journal in seismology & earthquake science, as a case of grassroots community-based open-access publishing , and discusses what went into the thinking in establishing the journal and how they are organizing their publishing enterprise ( At the end, she articulates four sets of recommendations for scientists in the field to change their practices with the broader structural changes in mind (


                          This session, chaired by Lisa Janicke Hinchliffe at the 2021 Charleston Conference, presented two speakers who represented non-profit open-access scholarly publishers: Stacey Burke, American Physiology Society (APS), and Sarah Pouhi, the Public Library of Science (PLOS). She also presented another speaker, Helen Dobson, from the UK’s Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC), representing libraries and consortia.

                          Stacey Burke discusses what steps APS went through internally and externally to prepare to shift to their transformative agreement (Read, Publish, & Join) and to manage it as a non-profit publisher supporting the Society’s work (

                          Sarah Pouhi discusses how PLOS is considering a new business model beyond the APC model. The model, highlighted in this session as “community-driven,” involves contracts with libraries and consortia. Although it was not clear in the presentation whether the APC model, for which PLOS was the early adopter, would stay as one of the PLOS business models, Sarah points out that the APC model is a transactional model which primarily benefits authors who can afford the APC; that it consequently perpetuates unequal barriers and inequality in publishing ( Later in a September 2022 PLOS blog post, she clarifies by reporting the latest update on their efforts to eliminate and move toward the “community-driven” model and the results. 


                          Useful Sources For Scholar-Led Open Access Projects and Ideas

                          OASPA and FORCE11 provide global forums on scholarly Open Access publishing where scholar-led initiatives, projects, ideas, and emerging and challenging issues are shared and discussed. Both organizations also provide skill-based workshops covering a wide range of topics related to Open Access publishing.

                          Open Access Scholarly Publishing Association (OASPA)

                          “[A] diverse community of organisations engaged in open scholarship with a mission to encourage and enable open access as the predominant model of communication for scholarly outputs. … [The] membership includes scholar-led and professional publishers of books and journals, across varied geographies and disciplines, as well as infrastructure and other services. … [OASPA is] a trusted convenor of the broad, global spectrum of open access stakeholders and a proven venue for productive collaboration. … [OASPA] develop[s] and disseminate[s] solutions that advance open access and ensure a diverse, vibrant, and healthy open access community.”


                          OASPA Annual Conference is a forum “for the exchange of ideas and sharing of information, and for highlighting best practices and innovation within the industry. “

                          OASPA Webinars cover key topics in OA publishing.

                          OASPA Blog

                          FORCE11: The Future of Research Communications and e-Scholarship

                          Growing out of the 2011 FORC Workshop held in Dagstuhl, Germany, FORCE11 is “a community of scholars, librarians, archivists, publishers and research funders that has arisen organically to help facilitate the change toward improved knowledge creation and sharing.” FORCE11 aims to change “modern scholarly communications through the effective use of information technology.”


                          FORCE11 hosts an annual conference. Check more information about the upcoming conference:

                          The videos from the past conferences may be found on the FORCE11 YouTube Channel:

                          News, blog posts, reports, and FORCE11 activities:


                          The Public Knowledge Project (PKP)

                          First initiated by John Willinsky with the support of University of British Columbia Pacific Press Professorship in 1998, the Public Knowledge Project offers the leading open-access platforms for running community-based scholarly publications.  



                          Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC)

                          Started as an initiative of the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) in 1998, SPARC is a non-profit advocacy organization advancing fair and equitable open access systems for research and education. SPARC is a membership organization with about 250 libraries and academic organizations in North America, SPARC coalitions in Africa, Europa, and Japan, and individual member organizations worldwide.


                          About SPARC:

                          Community-Owned Open Access Infrastructure — One of SPARC’s projects which is relevant to scholar-led scholarly communication projects:

                              • SPARC Landscape Analysis (March 29, 2019 — provides “a comprehensive look at the current players in this arena, their strategies and potential actions, and the implications of these on the operations of our libraries and home institutions.”

                                • SPARC Road Map for Actions (November 1, 2019 — provides detailed steps that stakeholder organizations can take to change the academic publishing industry and addresses the implications of large-scale data and data analytics deployment.

                              Related SPARC projects:

                              Right to Research Coalition

                              Campus Open Access Policies

                              SPARC Research Data Sharing Policy Initiatives


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