Publication Date

2013-02-28

Abstract

INTRODUCTION The observation that open access (OA) articles receive more citations than subscription-based articles is known as the OA citation effect (OACE). Implicit in many OACE studies is the belief that authors are heavily invested in the number of citations their articles receive. This study seeks to determine what influence the OACE has on the decision-making process of tenure-track science faculty when they consider where to submit a manuscript for publication. METHODS Fifteen tenure-track faculty members in the Departments of Biology and Chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill participated in semi-structured interviews employing a variation of the critical incident tecnique. RESULTS Seven of the fifteen faculty members said they would consider making a future article freely-available based on the OACE. Due to dramatically different expectations with respect to the size of the OACE, however, only one of them is likely to seriously consider the OACE when deciding where to submit their next manuscript for publication. DISCUSSION Journal reputation and audience, and the quality of the editorial and review process are the most important factors in deciding where to submit a manuscript for publication. Once a subset of journals has satisfied these criteria, financial and access issues compete with the OACE in making a final decision. CONCLUSION In order to increase the number of OA materials, librarians should continue to emphasize depositing pre- and post-prints in disciplinary and institutional repositories and retaining the author rights prior to publication in order to make it possible to do so.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

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