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American Chemical Society supports open access aims of Dutch universities

The American Chemical Society’s Publication Division (ACS) and Dutch universities represented by the VSNU have reached agreement on including open access publication as part of the contract with publishers. From 2017, all new articles submitted by an author associated with a Dutch university or participating research institute will be published open access at no extra cost to the author.

‘This is the first time that an American publishing house has agreed 100% open access with Dutch universities,' commented Gerard Meijer, principal negotiator on behalf of the VSNU. ‘ACS is both qualitatively and quantitatively a giant in the field of chemistry. In their turn, Dutch universities are prominent players in the chemical sciences. With this agreement, both we and ACS are confirming our relationship by taking an international leading role in the field of sustainable open access.'

This agreement signals ACS's intention to meet the request by Dutch universities to work on a joint transition to open access. The 100% open access agreement comes into effect in January 2017. Access to all scientific publications by ACS will be maintained and vouchers given to Dutch authors, offering reductions on open access publishing in the ACS Author Choice Program, remain valid throughout the whole of 2016.


The VSNU is conducting negotiations, known as 'Big Deal negotiations', on subscription costs with the individual scientific publishers. Universities are only willing to extend the agreements on subscriptions on the condition that publishers are prepared to make steps towards bringing open access closer. In the past year this has resulted in a number of agreements with larger and smaller international publishers.

Open access brings science closer

The Dutch universities, along with the Dutch government, are firmly in favour of free access to scientific publications. Open access is also a priority during the Dutch presidency of the EU. Open access publications are more easily findable, they are cited more often and they reach a wider audience. They benefit not only science, but society and the economy as well.

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