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Publishing Strategy

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Gold and Platinum open access

Gold and Platinum open access

A picture showing gold and platinum open access journals.


Open access journals are journals whose content (articles) are freely available on the Internet. Both large and small publishers publish open access journals. The basic difference between open access journals and subscription-based journals is the financial model they use to finance their publishing. The free vs. subscription-based access to their articles. Some open access journals have author fees (APC - Article Processing Charges) while others are financed by a university or research organization and there are no fees involved. There are also membership models, for example, Biomed Central's membership model.

The umbrella term for these open access journals is usually Gold Open Access but they are two different types based on their fee vs. no fee aspect:

  • Gold Open Access
    This term refers to open access journals that are financed via author fees (APC - Article Processing Charges). Even the large publishers publish this kind of open access journals, for example, Elsevier, Springer and Taylor & Francis
  • Platinum Open Access
    This term refers to open access journals that don't charge any author fees (APC - Article Processing Charges). They are usually financed by a university or research organization.
Jönköping University participates in several national agreements with different publishers which means that you as the corresponding author can make your article open access without having to pay the author fee. Please note that the publishers Oxford University Press and Taylor & Francis don't offer this for their gold open access journals. The publisher SAGE offers a 20% discount for gold open access journals.
More about the agreements here.

Find and quality control open access journals:

Search in journal indexes

Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)    

DOAJ is a database for open access journals. The journals that are listed in DOAJ have undergone a qualitative vetting process based on aspects such as the journals' peer review process, editorial board, contact information etc. See more about this here. Besides this, you can also search for open access articles. DOAJ can answer questions like these:

  • Are there any open access journals within my field?
  • Is the open-access journal I'm curious about included in DOAJ?
  • Is there any author fee included (APC - Article Processing Charge)?
  • From which country is the journal?
  • How long is the publishing process (Time from submission to publication)?

When you search in DOAJ you can see in the search list whether the journal has any author fee or not:

Screenshot from DOAJ about author fees.

If you click on the journal-title you will get a link to the journal website and more basic information, such as publisher, country, keywords describing its content, author fees and other editorial information:

Screenshot from DOAJ about author information.


Principles of Transparency and Best Practice in Scholarly Publishing
         A description of DOAJ's quality assessment process of the journals indexed in the database

  Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) [3:26]



Ulrichsweb is a database of journals and other periodical literature where you also can limit your search to only open access. Remember that Ulrichsweb indexes more or less all journals and doesn't make any qualitative selection (see further in the sections about Questionable publisher and journals) so therefore you need to check the potential journals, for example via the database DOAJ (see above).

In Ulrichsweb you click on the link Advanced Search: 

Screenshot of search box in Ulrichsweb.

Click on More Limiters:

Screenshot of limiters in Ulrichsweb.


In the box Key Feature, select Open Access and click on Search:

Screenshot of a ticked Open Access box in Ulrichsweb.


Limit to open access in journal databases

Web of Science

In the database Web of Science you can in the search results list limit to only open access journals. The limit functions are available in the column left to the search results. Tick the box in front of Open Access - YES:

Screenshot of limiters in Web of Science                    Screenshot of Open Access limiter in Web of Science.



In the database Scopus there is an option called Sources > Browse Sources where you can search for journals and limit to only open access journals:

Screenshot of where to browse sources in Scopus.


Indicator-based journal databases

Journal Citation Reports

In the database Journal Citation Reports, where you can search for the Impact Factors of Web of Science indexed journals (more about this database is found in the section Impact factors: Web of Science), you can also limit your search to open access journals only:

Screenshot of the open access limiter in Journal Citations Report.


Scimago Journal & Country Rank

In the database Scimago Journal & Country Rank where you search for impact factors journals indexed in Scopus (more about this database can be found in the section Impact factors: Scopus) you can also limit to only open access journals:

Screenshot of Open Access option in Scimago Journal & Country Rank.